UK graduate CV examples
From marketing to engineering, a solid graduate CV is your ticket to your first job after university. It showcases your educational achievements to date and demonstrate how they relate to the job you’re applying for. That’s paired with your work history and any transferable skills you’ve acquired through previous roles.
To make things easier, myPerfectCV has a range of graduate CV samples and templates, so you can get a good idea of a graduate CV layout and the CV structure for graduates before building your own for cyber security, criminology or any other specialism!
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CV writing tips for graduates
Whether it’s a recent graduate CV or you’re just planning ahead for life after graduation, our CV writing tips for graduates will help your application pass with flying colours.
Make your graduate CV job-specific
As a graduate, there’s a chance you’ll be applying for quite a diverse range of roles. If you send a generic graduate CV sample to recruiters, they’ll usually be able to spot it. Instead, tailor your CV to the job you’re applying for using keywords from the job description. It will improve your chances with ATS software and keep recruiters happy.
Start with a graduate CV template
Using a pre-made template will help you get the right CV structure for graduates with all the right sections and a suitable design. You can then tailor it to your requirements to build a PHD graduate CV or psychology graduate CV, for example. You’ll thank yourself later, when your CV takes around half the time to create and looks a whole lot better.
Check, check, and check again
In a recent graduate CV, it’s pretty likely that attention to detail will be amongst your key, transferable skills. That won’t seem to be true if it’s contained within a graduate CV profile that’s full of errors. However confident you are with your finished CV, make sure you proofread from top to bottom for typos, mistakes, or anything that doesn’t make sense.
Show your specialism
Recruiters should be able to tell the difference between a law graduate CV and a computer science graduate CV. While it’s important to include plenty of transferable skills, you should also ensure your graduate job CV is focused to your area of expertise and how this makes you a good fit for the job at hand.
Add any complementary achievements
Your CV isn’t just about how you graduated with honours. In most cases, university life includes various societies, teams, and other responsibilities that can set your recent graduate CV apart. If you captained a sports team, acted as treasurer for the law club, or had your dissertation published, it’s probably worth mentioning in your CV through a hobbies or interests section.
Graduate skills to include in your CV
Key skills are an essential part of your graduate job CV. While skills may vary based on your specialism, there are a selection of must-have transferable skills and complementary soft skills that all graduates should possess:
Must-have graduate skills for your CV
- Attention to detail
- Clear communication
- Time management
- Task prioritisation
- Analytical skills and critical thinking
- Word processing skills including Microsoft Office
Soft skills as an added extra
- Teamwork from group projects
- Presentations and public speaking
- Notetaking and shorthand
- Ability to work under pressure
- Following a brief
- Project management
Top FAQs about your graduate CV
How to write a graduate CV
Like our examples, your graduate CV should balance your area of expertise with transferable skills acquired through your studies or previous roles. Put simply, you want to show recruiters that you’re a good fit for the job at hand. It’s usually a good idea to have a few versions of your CV tailored to different roles, which can be further personalised with some key phrases from the job description.
What should a graduate CV look like?
In terms of appearance, your graduate CV layout should be easy for recruiters to skim-read. The best way to do this is by separating it into sections with clear headings, such as personal statement, key skills, work history, education, and interests. Design-wise, it’s best to stay formal with a conventional font like Arial. You can use professional colours like navy for headings or margins if you want to give your graduate CV a touch of personality, but the main body should use black font.
How long should a graduate CV be?
In the UK, a general rule of thumb is to keep your CV within one to two pages. The CV structure for graduates is no exception. If you’re lacking work experience, it’s definitely worth keeping your CV to one page in length. Recruiters won’t want to read more than a page unless it’s highly relevant to the role. Use bullet points for key skills and job responsibilities to keep your CV concise and to the point.
What to include in a graduate CV?
Your graduate CV should include any work experience from your time at university, including part-time roles, voluntary work, and summer jobs. You should also list your key skills, education, and a CV summary at the top. There’s no need to add a reference in your CV for fresh graduates. You can mention this in your cover letter or send references upon request.
Can a graduate CV be 2 pages?
As above, your graduate CV can be two pages in length if it’s justified. Typically, however, this isn’t the case. Unless you have extensive work experience, it’s best to keep your graduate CV to one page. This will give recruiters the information they need in one place.
How to nail your graduate CV personal statement
A personal statement acts as a CV summary for fresh graduates. It introduces you with a brief profile, including your degree, an overview of any relevant experience, and some key personal qualities.
To get your graduate CV profile right, it’s best to look at a few CV personal statement graduate examples. This will give you a better idea of what exactly to include, how to word your summary, and how to keep things concise.
Build a first-class UK graduate CV
From physics to finance, accounting to engineering, and criminology to computer science, myPerfectCV can help you build a graduate CV that ticks every box. Find the perfect layout with our pre-made templates. See how it’s done with graduate CV examples. Then download in PDF, Word or other formats when your CV is completed.
With our CV builder, you can even select pre-written content to describe your previous roles. Get started on your fresh graduate CV today!