Wording self-taught skills on resume...

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Joined: 29 Aug 2010
Age: 37
Gender: Male
Posts: 895

30 Sep 2010, 12:16 am

How do you do it without sounding like an ass?


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Joined: 2 Mar 2009
Age: 49
Gender: Male
Posts: 6,778

30 Sep 2010, 7:06 am

Basically, just list the skills as "additional skills and experience." If you can cite actual projects you've done, do it. You don't have to be paid for something to be experience.

If they press on the issue, politely explain that formal education does not necessarily equate to knowing how to get a job done and cite the fact that the vast majority of IT workers at the beginning of the dot.com boom did not gain their knowledge from formal schooling but rather were self-taught hobbyists who followed the emerging technology and were sought out because they were the few who understood it and knew how to put it to work.

I also like to point out that "education" equates to nothing more than 30 credit hours of training in a particular field (BA/BS degree level). 30 credit hours is basically 30 hours per week for about 16 weeks and many college graduates prove unreliable because for all their book knowledge, they have no ability to actually do the task they were trained to perform. Experience outweighs education every time.


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Joined: 17 Sep 2005
Age: 34
Gender: Female
Posts: 441
Location: AU

03 Oct 2010, 6:24 am

Listing it as "additional skills and experience" is a good idea. If you did manage to get some paid work through your self-taught knowledge, then it's a better idea to put that under the employment history section instead.

I taught myself website design and managed to get some paid employment out of it, so I always put that experience under my employment history. When people ask, I'm upfront about it and say that I taught myself those skills. Thankfully no-one has acted adversely to it. Actually, I managed to get one government contract job out of those self-taught skills.

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