Your Story, Your Terms: Unofficial CV activity

We are used to measuring what we can count in terms of learning, but how do we celebrate the things that matter?

Flickr photo Experimentation by Taro Taylor under CC-BY 2.0

Flickr photo Experimentation by Taro Taylor under CC-BY 2.0 license

We are often asked to tell our stories according to someone else’s standards of what counts, but we are not necessarily asked about what matters to us, what we value, even if it can’t be measured. We are even usually asked to express ourselves in some semi-standardized format, like a Curriculum Vitae (CV) or résumé.

What if we could write a CV that was based not on degrees and position and peer-reviewed publications, but on what we think is most important about who we are and what we are genuinely most proud to have accomplished? We know it’s not the first time some of you see an activity of introducing yourself differently – so this might be easier for some than others, but we hope all of you will enjoy doing this.

Here are some examples of things we would include and formats we used to represent ourselves – looking forward to yours!

We are inspired by the thinking of many people who emphasize “all the stuff that matters but does not count”. Lee Skallerup Bessette writes about how service and social media activity and activism are underrated or ignored in academia. Dave Cormier held a week about counting in #rhizo15. Rebecca Hogue challenged the traditional bio. The #clmooc team encouraged participants to do untroductions.

So let’s think of less formal and more formative markers of achievement and personal growth.

Some suggestions:

  • Making a (long term?) friend through a MOOC/ peer review process
  • Being noticed/recognized by somebody REALLY IMPORTANT or someone you deeply respected
  • Doing or writing something that inspires others to remix it (see Tania Sheko’s radio play)
  • Finding an unrelated shared interest (knitting, ukulele)

Some things are slightly more countable, but not usually counted for grades/promotion/tenure (see Bonnie Stewart’s research on influence via Twitter and her post about everybody being a social media guru)

Here are some unofficial CVs:

Tweet yours out to #digiwrimo and #altcv or post it on your blog (or Soundcloud for audio, Youtube for video – wherever you like).  We’ll work on aggregating these here. Don’t have a blog? Create an open Google Doc and share it with us in the comments here or via Twitter.

Editor’s edit: we started curating your #AltCV contributions here – add yours!

(Photo: Experimentation by Taro Taylor licensed under CC-BY 2.0)

14 thoughts on “Your Story, Your Terms: Unofficial CV activity

  1. I really liked your Altcv Maha, very inspiring and giving a view from another angle on your work.

    Sometimes I’m tempted to add what I’m not. People tend to imagine us in positions or trajectories we are not pursueing. Just mentions, not long lists.

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