I have just joined this community and I am going to apply for a CS PhD for Fall 2022. Currently, I am preparing my CV.

Since I have been working in the industry as a software engineer for roughly five years, I have some non-academical projects and I wonder whether and how I shall add them to my CV.

These projects can be broadly categorized as followings:

  1. Open source projects with github link (and some stars, forks)
  2. A web app with some regular users (like 10k), which I write personally (not open source, but can provide link)
  3. Some company-based proprietary projects (not open source, and mostly no public information)

My current guess is to add open source project as "Community Engagement" like Should I add E-books and Blog Posts to my CV? . But I don't have a clear idea on the second, and absolutely no clues for the third.

Any advices are appreciated. Many thanks!

1 Answer 1


Non-academic projects are fine, as long as they are related in some way to the field. So, for CS, your examples are fine. But coaching youth softball is probably better left out.

Just keep it relevant.

Caveat: this is a US based answer, where prior research experience isn't a requirement for doctoral admission. Other places may be similar or not.

  • Thanks a lot for your advice! Based upon that I want to go a little bit specific, like what title shall I give for these projects. Is "Software Projects" just good enough or there are some better choices?
    – Kato
    Jul 21, 2021 at 11:12
  • 1
    That would work.
    – Buffy
    Jul 21, 2021 at 11:21
  • Thanks @Buffy !
    – Kato
    Jul 21, 2021 at 11:23

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