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Making the Dean's List is quite a feat. No doubt about it.
The question is—
Do you put Dean's List on a resume?
Find out if it will actually impress the recruiter, or distract them.
This guide will show you:
- When to put Dean's List on a resume.
- When it’s better not to list Dean's List on a resume.
- How to include Dean's List on a resume to make it work for you.
- Examples of how to write Dean's List on a resume.
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Looking for other resources on resume writing? Check out our guides:
- What to Include in a Resume
- How to Put Your Education on a Resume
- How to Put Phi Beta Kappa on a Resume
- How to Put Athletics on a Resume
- Resume With No Experience
- Entry-Level Resume
- College Student Resume
- High School Student Resume
- College Graduate Resume
- Examples of Resumes That Get Jobs
Putting Dean's List on a Resume is Optional
It’s only natural you want your resume to stand out from among 250+ applications that an average job offer attracts.
And since you made the Dean's List you’d like to put this achievement on your college graduate resume.
The gut feeling that everybody gets is to obviously put it on your resume.
The problem is—
Everybody’s not always right.
Including Dean's List on a resume is optional, and it’s good to know when to go for this option and when not to.
Include Dean's List on a Resume When You Made it Consistently
Long story short—
Put Dean's List on your resume if you made it all semesters.
This way you’ll demonstrate a consistent level of high academic performance.
You can do this by simply adding an extra bit of information to your resume education section:
Dean's List on a Resume—Example
2009 MA in English Literature
Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
GPA 3.9, Dean's List all semesters
Pro Tip: If you decide to put both Dean's List and your GPA score on a resume, list them in the same line. Most of the time though you’d want to put either of them—a high GPA is usually enough.
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Don’t Include Dean's List on a Resume if You Only Made it One Semester
If you made the Dean's List only once, it’s best to drop it entirely from your resume.
Well, all it shows is that you were either lucky just once or stopped applying yourself.
It may attract all sorts of uncomfortable questions from the recruiters.
And the last thing you want in an interview is getting uncomfortable questions from the recruiters.
Pro Tip: If you graduated with Latin or Greek honors, putting Dean's List doesn’t add any more value to your resume and only clutters the document.
Need more evidence against putting Dean's List on a resume if you made it only once?
Here you are:
Have you heard of the presenter’s paradox?
In short, it turns out that if you present your weak skills or achievements next to your strongest ones, the former will not add any value to the latter in your reader’s eyes.
More than that, the value of your most impressive achievements will dilute if they’re displayed next to the mediocre ones.
To conclude, the presenter’s paradox study confirms that sometimes less is more.
When to Put Dean's List in a Separate Resume Section
Say you made the Dean's List 2 or 3 semesters, and you feel like not including this on your resume would be a bummer.
Here’s what to do:
Create a separate section labeled Awards and Accomplishments and put Dean's List there among your other awards, like so:
How to Mention Dean's List on a Resume in the Awards Section:
Awards and Accomplishments
- Student of the Year Award 2018
- 1st Prize in a Student Essay Contest
- FuturizeX Student Challenge Runner-up
- Dean's List, 3 semesters
Even if you haven’t been able to make the Dean's List consistently, you can always justify this with your involvement in the activities that let you win the other awards.
Simple as that.
Pro Tip: Make sure Dean's List isn't the only award you put in the awards section. If you have no other awards to brag about, just drop the section entirely.
Plus, a great cover letter that matches your resume will give you an advantage over other candidates. You can write it in our cover letter builder here. Here's what it may look like:
Here's how to list Dean's List on a resume:
- Including Dean's List on a resume is optional.
- By all means, put Dean's List on a resume if you made it all semesters.
- If you made Dean's List only once, leave it out.
- If you made Dean's List several semesters, consider including it in a separate section on your resume.
Do you have any other questions about how you should put Dean's List on a resume? Give us a shout out in the comments below! Always happy to help.