When it comes to first impressions the adage that you never get a second chance to make a first impression rings true.
First impressions are made in seconds in person and sometimes within a blink of an eye. Princeton psychologistspublished a studyshowing lasting opinions of others can be made from a first impression in a tenth of a second!
When searching for a Texas teaching job, the first impression you make will not come in person but in the form of your resume. That gives you more than a blink of an eye to impress the principal looking over your resume, but not as much time as you might think. Discard the notion that your finely-crafted resume will get a thorough pouring over, as most principals will spend about 10 seconds initially scanning your resume to see if it warrants a closer look.
10 seconds could even be a luxury! The experts at Resume Genius cite one study that showed hiring managers take an average of six seconds to decide whether to trash your resume or put it in the keep pile.
It's important then that your resume clearly demonstrate two key points:
You resume should clearly say "I am legally employable". Show that you are certified to teach in Texas or are on the path to certification through ECAP.
Your resume should have a style and substance that convinces a principal that "you want to hire me".
How to Create a Resume for a Texas Teaching Job that will Land You a Dream Interview
Let's start with some tips that apply no matter what subject or grade you want to teach:
Keep your resume to one page. Even if you are a career-changer that could fill two to three pages, resist the urge to go longer than a page. If a principal only has 10 seconds for that first impression, don't waste half of it by making them flip through your resume looking for key points.
List the subject test(s) you have passed in Texas that make you eligible to teach. Remember that as of September 1, 2017, all required content tests must be passed in order for a teaching applicant to eligible for a certificate.
Highlight your enrollment in an alternative certification program such as ECAP. School districts look for ECAP graduates because of their reputation for excellence. Your ECAP enrollment assures schools that they are looking at a candidate with top-notch training.
Pick a style, any style! You can find some great resume templates on sites like Resume Genius, but the key is to pick a style and stick to it. If you resume is a hodgepodge of different styles -- especially different typeface fonts -- then it will not leave a good first impression. Principals are looking for an organized candidate so your resume should look orderly.
Less is more. Yes, it is hard for some job seekers to fit everything on one page, but that doesn't mean your resume should look like a big city newspaper from 1870. In fact, you should leave plenty of "white space" which allows for an easy scan through your highlights. There is a chance that what you put at the top and bottom of the resume may be the only thing viewed.
Spelling counts! Nothing will land your resume in the "circular filing bin" than spelling or punctuation errors.
Key Elements Every Texas Teaching Job Resume Should Include
While you can choose your own resume style to taste, there are elements that all teaching resumes should include:
Contact information - Note that your KathyLuvsKittyKats@hotmail.com email may be cute, but won't make a great first impression. Claim a professional-sounding email address for your resume.
Objective - Short and sweet and up top, this sentence or two lets the employer know what subject and grades you are looking to teach.
Certifications - List test(S) passed and your enrollment in an alternative certification program with ECAP.
Education - This can be up top for new job seekers as it is better to show your recent education than a summer job from college. For those already with a work history, education will go towards the end of the resume.
Professional/Work History - Don't just list previous employment but use action verbs to demonstrate your achievements and capability as a future teacher. These action verbs will give your resume some life and can separate it from the pack.
Skills - List skills that would translate into the classroom such as educational software proficiency.
Finally, your resume is not set in stone. Feel free to tailor it for each job you are seeking. Making your resume specific to the job opening might just be the extra step that lands you that dream interview.
Micah is the Director of Curriculum & Technology. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in British Literature, from the University of North Texas and a Master of Arts in Teaching, from Louisiana College. In his previous career, Micah served for 14 years as a banker and bank manager. For the majority of this period, Micah managed the Downtown Fort Worth location of Frost Bank.
In 2005, Micah finally surrendered to his true calling to be an educator. After a brief, but fulfilling term teaching high school English at Flower Mound High School in Lewisville ISD, Micah went to work for the family business, training teachers.
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