From the Northeastern Section of the ACS, focusing on career management and development

December 2021
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Resume File. Publications listing
Filed under: Position Searching, Public Relations docs, Mentoring, Post-docs, Technicians
Posted by: site admin @ 2:01 pm

A lot of differing opinions came in from colleagues
when the question was posed: 

Should I list papers that have been written but are
sitting unsent on my professor’s desk?
 Let me offer a fuller context:

“A member shared the story of submitting his resume
and then being asked, “didn’t he have any publications
resulting from his dissertation?”  He then responded
that his adviser had three paper manuscripts on his
desk.  The recruiter suggested that they be added to
the resume as ‘in preparation’, otherwise people would
wonder why no publications from the work.  So, I
sent in the modified resume and soon after received
all phone call from staffing expressing interest in
pursuing my filling their openings.” [edited]

This is a tough market, even tougher than recent memory. 
(1) Do, with integrity, what you can to represent
well as an attractive candidate for
interesting positions. 

(2) Everything you do will be fair game for
questions and
(3) Various firms expect to see papers generated
the research that we do from universities. 
When one
works in industry, publications are possible,
but do
not happen as often.  (see a previous blog
entry for discussion.)
In fact, when reviewing resumes professionals may
rank resumes based on number of years from BS to
PhD (years in grad school), number of papers from
undergraduate research,
number of papers from
graduate research, number
of papers from post-
doctoral research, number of
review articles and
book chapters, quality of graduate
program and
professor, quality of post-doc adviser,
and even
time to publication from starting research.

So understand there is benefit in sending in a separate
sheet ‘list of publications’ with your resume.  (refer to
‘resume file’ in blogroll and above blog.)

This question demands responses from different
perspectives.  So, I asked trusted colleagues the
question and their responses are provided in the
- tenured faculty member, dozens of graduates
- senior industrial technical director, hundreds of hires
- experienced faculty member, program director
- technical recruiter with strong history of hiring
many doctoral candidates and mentoring many students
- experienced entrepreneur
- me

7 Responses to “Resume File. Publications listing”

  1. site admin Says:

    L. Kirschenbaum:   “In the case of a new grad
    with no publications, I think listing them is better
    than the alternative.”
  2. site admin Says:

    J. Borchardt:  As a general practice, I advise
    to list manuscripts as publications, until
    they are
    accepted for publication.

    I advise:
    - talk to their adviser about getting papers
    as soon as possible if they don’t
    have doubts about
    the validity of the data
    or conclusions.

    - offer to write the first draft.
    - work with their professors to present oral
    or poster
    papers to help overcome the lack
    of publication
  3. site admin Says:

    J. Shulman:   When I talk about areas of a
    that have more than one
    interpretation, I present all
    sides, with pros
    and cons of each.

    In the case of listing publications “in
    I suggest that this should be
    generally avoid. The
    main reason is that if
    6 months later the paper is
    not in press,
    you may have some embarrassing

    explaining to do.

    However, if you have no publications and
    one or
    more manuscripts are on your adviser’s
    desk, this
    is an exception to the rule– list
    title and authors.

    But, you should be able to produce a
    if asked.

    This is an area where others may have valid opinions.
  4. site admin Says:

    Lisa Balbes:  I usually suggest not to list papers
    unless they are at least submitted — which
    someone other than the author has read
    them and
    thought they were okay.

    Talking to the adviser and trying to get the
    moving is the first thing to do.

    If that fails because the advisor is “too busy,”
    perhaps listing the title, authors and in
    would be okay.

    I would make sure not to list anything on the
    resume unless I could produce a copy if asked.
  5. site admin Says:

    Herb Silverman:  Dealing solely with industrial
    I strongly believe that the resume
    needs to be as strong
    as possible. It’s sole
    purpose is to get an interview.

    While I do not believe that a list of publications
    appropriate for the resume, except as an
    I do believe listing of the number
    of publications and
    patents should be included.

    If all one has are publications in preparation
    then I
    would recommend including them.

    The interview is where the nuances can be
    sorted out
    if the question comes up.
  6. site admin Says:

    R. Bretz:   I am hesitant to have him list the
    without first asking his advisor
    the status and what help
    he could provide
    to get them out the door.

    I have seen cases where the advisor claims
    that the
    student’s writing is [not adequate]
    so that multiple
    revisions are needed.

    I have also seen where the advisor is not
    to get the manuscript out for a
    variety of reasons.

    The latter case is where the “in preparation”
    can be included.
  7. site admin Says:

    D. Eustace:  To me resumes for industrial
    do not include publications, unless
    there is room on a
    one-page resume.  There
    are advantages and
    disadvantages for
    including publications.

    List of publications seem to me to fit well as
    addendum item for a resume. As a rule,
    to me should be in print to be
    listed, since then the
    reviewer can seek them out.

    This addendum is met well with the concept
    of a
    resume file which has a separate page
    of patents,
    publications and presentations.
    To this we can add
    in this unique case
    publications in preparation.”

    Looking into the wider applicability of the
    file concept one sees that mid-career
    and managers can use the file to
    have separate
    pages to describe industry
    overview, patent reviews,
    technology reviews,
    research summaries and
    other pertinent documents.

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