Biologist CV Guide + Tips + Example

Dayle Kavonic
By Dayle Kavonic, Career Advice Expert
Last Updated: October 18, 2023
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A well-written CV is a great starting point in your journey to securing a job as a biologist. If you don’t know where to start, don’t panic. We’re here to help. Use this guide to craft an impressive CV for a biologist role that draws attention to your relevant skills and qualifications and helps you get the position you want.

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Biologist CV example (text version)

Evander Williams

Philadelphia, PA 19111
555 555 5555
(555) 555-5555
example@example.com

Summary Statement

Skilled and knowledgeable biologist with a proven record of accurate and reliable results in the lab for the past 14 years. Experience with collecting data and conducting experiments for studies in a variety of industries. Expertise with high-tech tools and scientific instruments in all aspects of the job. Strong background in a supervisory role for research assistants, interns and those who are new to the field.

Core Qualifications

  • Research management
  • Data collection and analysis
  • Laboratory techniques
  • PCR and qPCR
  • Microscopy
  • Gel electrophoresis
  • Scientific communication
  • GIS and Remote Sensing
  • Experimental design
  • Writing reports

Education

  • Temple University Philadelphia, PA
    Ph.D. Bioinformatics
  • Temple University Philadelphia, PA
    Professional Science Master’s Biotechnology
  • Temple University Philadelphia, PA
    Bachelor of Science Biology

Work Experience

November 2019 – Current
ERM – Philadelphia, PA
Lead Biologist

  • Gather data using controlled experiments and keep materials organized to study changes or trends.
  • Use computers to keep track of results and input information about potential studies, materials used and information learned from experiments.
  • Supervise and train a team of 15 other scientists, research assistants, interns and students in the science lab setting.
  • Lead grant proposal writing, securing $50,000 in funding for a cell biology research project.

September 2013 – October 2019
Jefferson Health – Philadelphia, PA
Biologist

  • Conducted research on specific biological populations by collecting samples from the field and creating conditions for an experiment.
  • Published reports detailing findings after 18 months of research and indicated conclusions learned from the data.
  • Conducted biological analyses for a $20 million project and determined new methods to improve research issues.
  • Achieved a 25% increase in experimental efficiency by introducing streamlined protocols for DNA purification.

June 2009 – August 2013
Temple University – Philadelphia, PA
Biologist Assistant

  • Attended industry conferences and events throughout the country to represent the organization and its goals.
  • Supervised a team of 10 student interns throughout their work in a biological lab as they used experiences to earn college credit.
  • Collaborated with community members and leaders about the nature of the lab’s work and reached out to show some of the lab’s benefits.
  • Utilized confocal microscopy to visualize subcellular structures and perform quantitative image analysis.

Research Experience

  • Interpreted data and made recommendations from findings as a research analyst in “Investigating Gene Expression Patterns and Regulations,” (2021) at Temple University.
  • Analyzed statistical data using both modern and traditional methods as a research assistant in “Investigating Cellular Signaling Pathways and Proteins Interactions,” (2019) at the University of Pennsylvania.
  • Gathered, arranged and corrected research data to create representative graphs and charts highlighting results for presentations in “Patterns and Interpretation Techniques,” (2016) at the University of California.
  • Validated incoming data to check information accuracy and integrity while independently locating and correcting concerns in “Diversity and Function of Microorganisms in Various Environments,” (2015) at Temple University.

Publications

  • Williams, E. (2023). Bioinformatics and Computational Biology. Biology Open, 12(7), 210-225. https://journals.biologists.com/bio
  • Williams, E. (2023). Handling and Analyzing Large-Scale Data Sets.
  • Journal of the American Statistical Association, 118(3), 100-110. https://www.tandfonline.com/toc/uasa20/current
  • Williams, E. (2023). Exploring DNA Repair Mechanisms and Genomic
  • Stability Technologies. BMC Biology, 32(2), 40-45. https://bmcbiol.biomedcentral.com/

Conference Presentations

  • Investigating the Molecular Mechanisms of Organogenesis Conference – (2023)
  • Exploring Data Analysis and Data Cleaning Today – (2022)
  • Genomics and Informatics: Opportunities and Challenges – (2021)
  • Cell Biology and Signaling Conference – (2019)

Conference Attendance

  • For Complex Biologic Summit, Philadelphia, PA – (2023)
  • The Biology of Genomes, New York, NY – (2023)
  • Joint Statistical Meetings, (JSM) Washington, DC. – (2022)
  • Workshop on Design of Experiments, virtual (DOE) – (2022)
    2022 CSP, virtual – (2022)

Professional affiliations and memberships

  • American Institute of Biological Sciences (AIBS) – (2023)
  • American Society of Cell Biology (ASCB) – (2022)
  • Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB) – (2021)

Profession Relevant Skills

  • Excellent attention to detail and incredible organizational skills, which keep me focused on the small parts of each experiment.
  • Strong computer and data entry skills with experience in software such as C++, Perl, Excel, Access, SQL and LabVIEW.
  • Expertise with scientific tools and instruments for data collection and experiments, such as pipettes, microscopes and centrifuges.
  • Dedicated to performing experiments safely and following all of the proper regulations to ensure reliability.
  • Excellent written communication skills when preparing proposals, grant requests, study summaries and research papers.

HOBBIES AND INTERESTS

When I am not in the lab, I enjoy going out and seeing the world. I have backpacked and hiked all over the North American continent and visited many national parks. For the past several years, I have been slowly working on hiking various trails in and around Europe. Each summer, during my vacation time, I work on a new trail and hiking adventure trip.

5 essentials of a top biologist CV

  1. Contact details

    Without contact information, hiring managers cannot invite you for an interview. Create a section at the top of your biologist CV for your contact details and display them as follows: Your full name, then your city, state and ZIP code, followed by your phone number and professional email address. If you have a LinkedIn profile, add this as well.

  2. Personal statement

    A personal statement, also called a professional summary, is your chance to shine in a few short sentences. It’s where you introduce yourself to the hiring manager and pitch your best technical and soft skills, as well as your relevant work experience. Your summary should also include one or two of your most notable professional accomplishments to grab the employer’s attention. If you’re writing a CV for an entry-level biologist role, use an objective statement instead.

  3. Skills

    Hiring managers want to know if your skills match their needs. Show them you have what it takes to thrive in a biologist job by creating a separate section and using bullet points to display your top hard and soft skills — from sample collection and species identification to communication and attention to detail — as demonstrated by our sample CV for a biologist position.

  4. Work history

    Your biologist CV must include a detailed employment history section to showcase your work experience. List current and previous employers in reverse-chronological order and provide names of the institutions, locations and the dates you worked for each. Add three bullet points of quantifiable achievements for every job you list. If this is your first job application, list relevant internships, volunteer positions and study-related laboratory or field experience under your work history section. 

  5. Education

    Follow the lead of our biologist sample CV and add all the educational institutions you’ve attended after high school to an education section in your document. Use bullet points for each university and display the name of the degree, the school’s name and the year you graduated, unless it was more than 10 years ago. You can also list certifications and similar credentials here.

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Do’s and don’ts for building a biologist CV

  • Use measurable achievements to describe your skills and experience as a biologist.
  • Use action words to add impact to your CV for a biologist role.
  • Tailor your CV to your target biologist job.
  • Use keywords from the job description throughout your biologist CV.
  • Format your biologist CV so that it is easy to read by ATS software and human eyes.
  • Lie about your biologist experience and skills.
  • Boast about your “unparalleled” expertise in your area of specialization.
  • Include irrelevant personal information, such as your ethnicity and age.
  • Add skills and experience that aren’t relevant to a biologist role.
  • Forget to proofread. A biologist CV with errors is unprofessional.

Top 4 tips for acing a biologist interview

  1. Learn about the employer before your interview.

    Learning about your prospective employer’s history, goals, values and people is important before the interview. It shows genuine interest, dedication and commitment — traits that hiring managers look for in top job candidates. Plus, getting a glimpse of the culture at your target workplace before you’re interviewed will give you an idea of what to expect on arrival so that you can feel more confident.

  2. Practice!

    A little practice now will go a long way during your interview. To practice for your interview, start by reviewing the most common interview questions, such as: 

    Ask a friend or family member to interview you so you can get comfortable with the questions and imprint the answers in your mind. Ask them for feedback on your performance and answers and write down any suggestions that resonate with you. You’ll feel confident and ready when it’s time for the real thing.

  3. Ask questions.

    Your interviewer will ask if you have any questions about the job at the end of your session. You should always have at least three questions ready to ask them. Job candidates who don’t ask questions are less likely to get hired because hiring managers assume they aren’t interested in the role or won’t put much thought into it. 

    Some questions you might ask for a biologist position are: 

    • How does this position contribute to the research goals or mission of the organization?
    • Can you describe the supervision structure within the organization to support professional growth?
    • Can you provide more information about your laboratory facilities and equipment?
  4. Have references ready.

    Having professional references ready before your interview will prepare you if the hiring manager decides to move forward. Create a list of two former colleagues and a former supervisor who would be willing to speak about your abilities as a biologist and who you know will give you a stellar review. It’s even better if they’re open to writing a letter of recommendation for you. If you are applying for your first full-time job, use contacts from your studies and any internships or volunteer work you’ve done.

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