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You are here: The Job Explorer > Resume > Resume Checklist > Resume Education Section

Resume Education

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The education section is a must in your resume. It contains the most important parts of your history. If you are a recent graduate, it means to be a sole opportunity to demonstrate your qualification. Here are tips to strengthen your records:

  • List your most recent degree first. If you are still enrolled in an institution, list it. Don't forget to include the date of graduation and the degree expected.

  • For each institution, you should list the name of the school, its location by city/state and country if you enrolled outside the United States. You should also include the degree level and type (e.g. Master in Science, PhD in Economics, or Bachelor of Fine Arts), major or concentration, and the date of degree completion. If you did not get a particular degree, list the certificate otherwise.

  • Your GPA is also expected to be included on your resume. The GPA is an indicator of your performance during college. So pick up your overall GPA or major GPA, either is higher.

  • You can also include academic honors, awards, scholarships, or any other scholastic accomplishments during college.

  • Internship or co-op experience can also be listed here. However, we recommended you list them in the Work Experience Section if you have no significant professional experience.

Here is a sample of resume education section. Find tips right under the image.

Degree Information

Degree granted

  • If more than one degree was granted from the same institution, then list the institution once and list the degrees separately under the name of the institution with the most recent degree first.

Date degree was/will be granted

  • If the degree will be granted within the current academic year, simply list the month and year after the degree.
  • If you are more than a year from graduation, then your degree should be followed by "Anticipated Graduation:" followed by the month and year.

Major (s) and minor(s)

  • More than one major and/or minor may be listed with or without a heading - EXAMPLES: Majors: Electrical and Computer Engineering; BA in History with minors in Economics and Business; Major: Labor and Industrial Relations, Minor: Psychology

Institution Information

  • Full name of institution
  • Cite only those institutions from which a degree is listed; and present in reverse chronological order (most recent degree first, including a degree that is expected). The following information should be provided for each degree earned. EXAMPLE: The Pennsylvania State University
  • City & state where the institution is located. EXAMPLE: The Pennsylvania State University - University Park, PA

Academic Honors Information

  • Often listed with GPA information - EXAMPLE: GPA: 3.51 Dean's List. You don't need to give a specific listing of which semesters you were on the Dean's List unless it was every semester - EXAMPLE: GPA: 3.67 Dean's List every semester.
  • If there are a number of honors, e.g. academic honor societies, scholarships, etc., a separate section may be developed within the Education section or in an Honors section of its own

GPA Information

  • Generally overall GPA is listed if it is over or close to 3.0.
  • If major GPA is stronger, then you should list it, as well as your overall GPA - EXAMPLE: Major GPA: 3.1 Cumulative GPA:2.9
  • Be sure to be consistent with the number of significant digits when listing GPA's as above - EXAMPLE of inconsistency: Major GPA: 3.1 Cumulative GPA: 2.92
  • It is acceptable to round up, as long as you follow the rules of rounding - EXAMPLE: 2.95+ can be rounded to 3.0 but not 3.00
  • When GPA is not listed, most employers will assume it is much lower than 3.0. Reviewing this question with a career counselor may be helpful in evaluating this issue.

Study Abroad

  • This is the one exception to listing only institutions from which degrees were granted. Letting an employer know that you studied abroad communicates initiative, understanding of other cultures, maturity, language skills (depending on country). These are good qualities to demonstrate to prospective employers.
  • List the name of the institution (not the Penn State program) and the city and country
  • May include courses if relevant, i.e. if you studied the economy in another country and your career area involves an understanding of economics
  • If appropriate, you may want to include that you lived with a native family - to demonstrate immersion into the culture


  • This provides added value if courses outside the normal degree requirements were taken, an area of academic concentration was pursued, or only part of the degree program has been covered to date (usually most helpful for internship-type resumes).

Example of Resume Education

Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems
Expected graduation date: July 2008
Major GPA: 3.45/4.0

Relevant Courses in Accounting, Economics, Statistical Analysis, Mathematical Programming, Management Information Systems



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