I want to submit my CV/Resume to universities for MS in CS. I have learnt web designing and development along with other programming languages learnt in undergraduation.

I used to prepare 2 resumes, one for web development companies and other for software companies and I would submit suitable one.

Now can I do something creative and submit a CV that looks something like this? http://www.smashingmagazine.com/images/design-cv-resume/sarah_parmenter.pdf

Will the universities not consider if I do something like this? or do I need to submit normal 2 page resume?

  • Your link does not work ("403 Forbidden"). Dec 13, 2013 at 19:42
  • Sorry about that. It's working on my end. Nevertheless here is the link to the article smashingmagazine.com/2009/04/01/… Please refer to the 5th image (Yellow) that I am talking about. Dec 13, 2013 at 20:23
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    Ew. Just... ew. No.
    – JeffE
    Dec 14, 2013 at 0:20

1 Answer 1


Unless you're specifically applying for a MS in graphic design, your CV should, first and foremost, show off your academic and research accomplishments, not your graphic design skills.

Keep it simple. Creativity is fine; good typography is great; but emphasize the content. The fourth image on that page (with the blue dot) is much more suitable.

Good design is invisible. A bright yellow background is not invisible. Therefore....

  • I would write about my academic and research accomplishments first but that was just to give you an overview of how my resume might look like. Do you suggest to go with that format or a simple 2 page black and white resume? Dec 14, 2013 at 2:22
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    @user1395787 Try the ModernCV package for LaTeX for a good, "pre-baked" CV format. The way to make yourself stand out is through what's written, not how it is presented. As JeffE says, good design is invisible. The reader should be able to look at the document as a whole and think "huh, this one looks quite nice...", but have difficulty picking exactly which element stands out to them. I think it's unusual (depending on the country you're applying to) to include a photo, your DOB, and marital status. If such personal information is not expected, do not include it.
    – Moriarty
    Dec 14, 2013 at 2:28
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    @Moriarty: It's standard in Europe, but verboten in the U.S.
    – aeismail
    Jun 20, 2015 at 13:21

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