Guidance for CVs for Peninsula Foundation School Portfolios

A CV is a summary of you. It is used in application processes and can be a very useful adjunct to a generic application form as it can reveal much more than just your accomplishments. It is a completely personal document and everything from the structure,
the emphasis, the font and even the paper used can be dictated by you and hence will reflect an element of you as an individual.

The CV is also a very useful way to keep a personal record of what you have done as your career progresses and keeping it up-to-date makes applying for jobs much easier as you can ‘cut & paste’ into application forms and are less likely to forget details.

You can also show it to colleagues throughout your career, who can advise as to what aspects you should be focusing on from a progression point of view. We need not emphasise that the CV must be honest and any false information or embellishment is
fraudulent and is treated as such.

Length: Keep it succinct and use headings. Space sections so they are neat, clear and easy to read. As you progress you will end up with more and more pages but in your early career the CV will be short and some sections may seem empty but this is the same for everyone, so don’t worry.


Most medical CV’s will look fairly similar and this is an example of the structure:

Personal details

> Name
> Address (current and postal if different)
> e-mail (try not to have too ‘whacky’ an address)
> phone numbers
> GMC number and registration status
> Age & Nationality is optional (if applicable add visa and work permit information)

Education- School and Medical School and dates.
Qualifications- with dates and results. A-levels (just subjects & grades) and GCSE results summary (ie x A*, y A’s, z B’s etc)
Prizes, Bursaries, Awards and Scholarships- any you may have been awarded possibly with a brief line of explanation.
Special Study Modules and Electives – when, where, what you did and who you worked for. You should briefly describe the experience, including your role, highlight what you learnt and possibly reflect on what you gained personally. Keep it short and clear.
Clinical Work Experience –Dates (month/year), grade, specialty, possibly consultant/ clinical supervisor if appropriate, employer (hospital/ practice etc). Start with current placement and most work back. Briefly emphasise what experience you gained. Be
reflective about what you personally got out of it. Include taster experiences used to explore career choice. This section could sound very similar to other candidates so as you progress you will tend not to include your medical student experiences.
Non-clinical Work Experience – Include dates, company name, your role and some information about what you did there. Highlight the transferable skills, how you contributed to the role and what experience you gained.
Volunteering – You can arrange the information in a distinct section, or incorporate it into your work experience section as long as you clearly show it as a voluntary activity and show the transferable skills.
Interests, Responsibilities and Achievements– everyone arranges these differently depending on what they have done. They show a lot about you as an individual and always be thinking about potential transferable skills.Your interests are important as they show what you like to do, how you have contributed outside of work/study, and how you have developed yourself. Try not just list your interests but put them into a meaningful context and explain the extent to which you participate. This often can form an ‘ice-breaker’ first question at interview. Responsibilities can include roles within clubs and societies - treat them like a job role and show the skills you have used and gained. Your achievements may overlap with either of the above. Again, provide some information about the work you put in, what you got out of it, and how it has helped you develop. This is where everyone differs and remember…. you will get found out if you are less than truthful. If you don’t love 16th century Danish poetry or weren’t treasurer of the tiddlywinks club don’t put it down as your interviewer is bound to be a Danish tiddlywinks champion!!
Additional Skills – such as IT and languages. Name the packages and/or languages and indicate your level of proficiency.
Courses- formal educational courses/ meetings attended: title, date, educational body, venue and possibly brief summary of what you learnt.
Teaching- brief details of:
a) relevant formal (non medical school) teaching you have attended (eg F1 teaching programme)
b) any teaching you have delivered (date, title, audience: students/nurses etc, as part of a formal teaching programme)
Audit- title, date, department, first cycle/re-audit, brief explanation including changes suggested/ effect on practice. Aim for at least one audit a year as a doctor.
Publications & Research- a box you need to start filling for some of the more competitive specialities. Quote any publications by the full journal reference and give short explanations.
Presentations- title, meeting presented at, venue, date & short explanation.
Career Aim –Short and purposeful, demonstrating your direction.
References – usually two referees are required for specialty application. Check that they are happy to act as a referee for you and provide their name, job title, work address, phone (secretary, direct line) and an e-mail address for easy contact.