CV and Application Advice
If you already know what you're applying for and why* and would like advice on how to improve a specific application for something before sending it off, our Applications Advisers can help. These appointments can cover applications for:
- any type of job / internship
- a volunteering project
- a further / postgraduate study course
- a PhD position
- or anything else you might be applying for
Whether your application is in the form of a CV, covering letter, personal statement or answers to specific questions on an application form, simply bring in a draft copy plus details of what the recruiter is looking for*.
The Adviser will review the application from a recruiter's perspective and give you tips and advice on how to improve it where necessary.
*Applications Advisers will not be able to give tips on how to improve a
CV if you don't yet know what you're applying to and what the recruiter
is looking for. A Short Guidance appointment will be more useful at
this stage to discuss your options
and to research areas of interest first.
Applications Advice appointments run at the same time every week:
- Monday to Thursday: 10am - 5pm (term time only*)
- Friday: 11am - 5pm (term time only*)
- Thursday evenings: 5pm - 7pm (Autumn and Spring terms only*)
- Monday to Friday: 2pm - 5pm (outside of term time*)
Appointments are available at 15 minute intervals during these times.
How to Book an Appointment
- Book online** up to 7 days in advance
- Book using your My UCL Careers account
- Once logged in, select 'I want to... / Make Appointment' and choose 'UCL Applications Advice' from the list of appointment types to check availability.
As appointment slots are pre-bookable 7 days in advance, they may not be available at short notice or for same day booking if demand is high. However, appointments booked by others may be cancelled at short notice so it's worth checking availability online regularly.
Multiple Bookings: There is no limit on the
number of Applications Advice appointments you can book whilst on your course but, due to
high demand for these appointments, you can only book one appointment at
a time. Please do not book anything if you already have a future appointment booked.
*Please check the main UCL Website for details of term dates and College closure days.
**If you are unable to book online, it is possible to book by phone or in personduring our opening hours. Please see our Contact Details page for details. You will need your student ID card when booking.
Knowing the basics on how to write an effective application can go a long way in making your one-to-one appointment more productive. We provide access to a wide range of information resources and highlight details of relevant events and workshops in our CVs and Applications pages which will provide a great start point when writing your application before meeting the Applications Adviser.
You'll also find similar resources and event information in the Career Planning or Further Study pages which will give you a better insight into the area you're applying to in terms of what you should be including in your application.
Make sure you're familiar with where we are. Arriving late for your appointment can lead to a shorter or cancelled appointment as detailed below.
If you have any materials which you feel would aid your
discussion with the Careers Consultant, we have printing facilities in
our Information Library. Please aim to arrive 5-10 minutes before your
appointment is due to start so you don't waste any of your appointment
time printing documents.
SHORT GUIDANCE - Would careers advice be more useful?
if you're unsure about your career or further study options and don't
yet have an application written for something specific, a Short Guidance
session will be more useful than Applications Advice. These
appointments can be used to explore options in terms of what areas your
skills, experience, qualifications and interests might be suited to.
The Applications Advisers will not write your application
for you so you should use the resources and/or events suggested below
before booking to ensure you have a well written draft before meeting them.
We're also unable to provide advice on an application
without knowing what it's being used for as content / structure is
likely to vary based on a particular recruiter's requirements. We cannot
therefore give advice on a "general CV" without at least having some
idea of who it's being sent to and why.
Spelling, grammar and general proof reading
As the advice concentrates on the content and relevance of an application for the target area of work or study, while we may point out grammatical or spelling errors in passing, it is our policy not to proof-read applications, nor to give detailed feedback or coaching against English Language competency. Such coaching falls beyond the remit of our specialist area.
This also means the sessions aren't designed for repeated checks of the same application or multiple applications which are similar in content to make each one word perfect.
Where the English demonstrated in applications is clearly unlikely to meet recruiters’ requirements, we would encourage students to take advantage of the wide range of English language courses offered by UCL Language Centre. Our downloadable Spelling and Grammar Guide can also help with common errors.
UCLU also offer a Writing and Language Support Programme (WaLS) to assist non-native English speaking students with their academic writing and speaking.
You could also show the application to someone whose first language is English to proofread it or for help with spelling/grammar - e.g. a friend, work colleague, someone on your course etc.
Foreign Language applications
We are aware that UCL students go on to live, work or study in a wide range of countries. However, we are only able to read and give advice on applications written in English. Our Work and Study Abroad page does provide links to resources with very detailed information on how application procedures/formats may vary in different countries so these can be used with the advice on content as detailed above to draft an application in English which you can later translate into the relevant language.
Due to the nature and format of these one-to-one advice appointments, we strongly recommend that you attend in person where possible.
However, if you're not based in London or will find it difficult to come to UCL Careers for your appointment, the Applications Adviser can look at your application and the recruiter's requirements and discuss these with you over the phone.
If you would like a phone appointment, you must notify us and email a copy of your application and information on what you're applying for BEFORE 9.30am on the day that your appointment is booked.
Please use: "Phone Appointment Request" in the subject line.
You will then need to call our general enquiries number, (020 3549 5900), at your appointment time to be put through to the Applications Adviser on duty.*
Please note however that we are unable to conduct Applications Advice appointments by Skype.
*Please be aware, as detailed below, one-to-one appointments do sometimes overrun which can mean some start later than scheduled so you may be asked to call back if the Adviser isn't ready when you call.
In addition to these Applications Advice appointments, PhD students and recent graduates also have access to alternative appointments as detailed at:
which may be more suitable for your needs if available before your application deadline.
Our Careers Consultants may also offer one-to-one appointments within academic departments at certain times of year as detailed in our Departmental Support pages.
If you know you won't be able to make your appointment, you can cancel it up to 1 hour before through your My UCL Careers account so that it can be offered to another student.
If you call in advance to
tell us you're running late, we will hold the appointment for 5 minutes
so that you can make use of the remaining 10 minutes on arrival. However, if you are more than 5 minutes late, your appointment will be cancelled so that later appointments are not affected and you will be asked to re-book for a later
Repeated missed appointments
If you book and miss 3 appointments, your My UCL Careers account will be suspended to ensure you don't book and waste any more. You will then need to book on the day in person at the UCL Careers office for any subsequent appointments this academic year.
Please note: Due to the nature of 1-1 advice, some appointments can last slightly longer than 15 minutes which means we cannot guarantee that you will always be seen exactly on time. However, you should still aim to arrive on time so that your appointment isn't cancelled.