Social Psychology Network

Maintained by Scott Plous, Wesleyan University

Sample Template for Creating a Vita

Date: Month, Year
(update semi-annually)


Your Name

[School Address] [Home Address]
Department of Psychology Apartment
University Street Address
City, State, Zip City, State, Zip
Office Phone: (with area code and extension) Home Phone: (with area code)
E-mail address  

Personal Information

Born: Date, Place (optional)
Citizenship: (usually reserved for foreign applicants or international jobs)
Marital Status: (optional but generally discouraged to avoid discrimination)


B.A. or B.S., Major Field, Year Received or Expected, University, City, State
M.A. or M.S., Field, Year Received or Expected, University, City, State
Ph.D., Field, Year Received or Expected, University, City, State

Honors and Awards

This is the place to list academic honors, graduation prizes, fellowships, scholarships, writing prizes, and so forth. List each award, the granting institution, and the date awarded (Note: If all your awards are graduation honors, then omit this category and subsume the information under "Education").

Association Memberships

In this section, list all memberships in:

  • Psychology associations such as APA and APS (click here for a listing of groups)
  • APA divisions (e.g., Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues)
  • International groups (e.g., International Society of Political Psychology)
  • Honors societies (e.g., Psi Chi, Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Chi, Phi Kappa Phi)
  • Science groups (e.g., American Association for the Advancement of Science)
  • Other professional organizations that link you with an interest or area of specialization

Professional Experience

Beginning with your college years, list all work you have done that is relevant to the program or position you are applying to. Include research positions with project titles and supervisors, and, optionally, a brief description of the duties you performed. This is also a good place to list any consulting, manuscript reviewing, or editorial experience you have (or, if you have had extensive experience in one of these areas, you can form a separate category for "Research Experience," "Consulting Activities," "Ad Hoc Reviewing," or "Editorial Experience").

Research Interests (usually for graduate applicants and prospective professors)

Briefly summarize your research interests with 4-6 key descriptors ranging from the very general to the very specific. For example, "I have broad interests in social and political psychology, particularly the resolution of international conflict. Specifically, I am interested in the role that decision heuristics and biases play in Arab-Israeli relations."

Current Research (usually for graduate students and prospective professors)

Describe your current research in one or two paragraphs. This will often be an overview of your thesis work. If you are working in more than one area, summarize each project in a separate paragraph. Conclude with a brief statement describing your future program of research for the next five years or so.

Teaching Experience (usually for teaching positions or prospective professors)

List any courses you have taught, co-taught, or assisted with as a TA. If you received strong teaching evaluations, consider attaching a separate sheet with a statistical summary and 5-10 examples of the most positive praise you have received. Also, faculty job candidates should list 4-6 courses that they are prepared to teach if hired (from the most general courses to advanced courses and specialized seminars). For example, a prospective assistant professor of social psychology might include the following statement:

I am prepared to teach the following courses:

  • Introductory Psychology
  • Social Psychology
  • Introduction to Statistics
  • Research Methods in Social Psychology
  • Seminar on the Psychology of Prejudice and Discrimination

Professional Presentations

List the titles of talks given to professional audiences, the sponsoring organizations, the places, and the dates.

Publications and Papers

If you are a young professional, this is the heart of your vita -- so be big hearted! List references in APA format according to date (including unpublished manuscripts or papers in press). Be careful, though, not to list any papers you are unprepared to make available if requested.


List the names, titles, and addresses of 3-4 people whom you have already asked to serve as references for you.

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