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Fonts & Bullets

by ResumeEdge.com - The Net's Premier Resume Writing and Editing Service


Fonts (aka type style or type face) set the tone for the entire resume. What is a font? It is that little bit of magic that enables humans to communicate in print. It is the alphabet set to music. It is art. Actually, a font is a set of curved, straight, or slanted shapes that your brain decodes into letters and then words, but that sounds too boring for a subject as fascinating as type style.

Every font has its own designer and its own personality. Each font projects a certain "feel." For instance, serif fonts (the kind with the little "feet") are considered more traditional. They are usually used as text fonts in books and magazines. Some samples include:

  • Times Roman
  • New Century Schoolbook
  • Padua
  • Bookman

Sans (meaning "without" in French) serif fonts, on the other hand, have no "feet" and are considered more contemporary, as in:

  • Helvetica (Arial)
  • Avant Garde
  • CG Omega
  • Univers

Although serif fonts are commonly used as text type for the main body of published works, you don't have to restrict yourself to these types of fonts for resumes. Either style produces equally impressive resumes.

Headline fonts and wild type faces have their place in design, but only in the headlines and only for very creative professions. Remember, you want your resume to be easy to read.

In all my years of designing resumes, I have discovered that my clients don't have to understand the science behind fonts or the difference between serif and sans serif fonts, and neither do you. It is more important that you look at samples of good resume fonts and then choose the one that makes your eyes "feel good." In other words, choose the one you like the best. Again, it comes down to personality.

If you are concerned about the scannability of your resume, remember that the fonts you choose play a major role. If you haven't read the Scannable Resume Tips, now is the time to read that section.


Bullets are special characters used at the beginning of indented short sentences to call attention to individual items on a resume. Short, bulleted sentences are easier to read than long paragraphs of text, and they highlight the information you want the reader to see quickly. Bullets also add some variety to a resume and make it just a touch more creative.

In both MS Word and WordPerfect for Windows or Macintosh, clicking on "Insert" gives you access to a myriad of special characters that are not found on your keyboard. That is how the bullets in this section were created. Your printing capabilities might not allow you to have access to all of these dingbats/wingdings/ symbols, but you can still be creative.

From Designing the Perfect Resume, by Pat Criscito.
Copyright 2000.  Reprinted by arrangement with Barron's Educational Series, Inc.

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