Effective cover letters for academic professionals
At CVapp.ie, we pride ourselves on our professional presentation. That’s why we’ve made sure our formatting is flawless! Crafting a great academic cover letter is a surefire way to grab the attention of potential employers – and all good cover letters should incorporate the following elements:
Cover Letter Headers
The first thing employers usually notice on a cover letter is the header. Headers contain important contact information, including name, job title, phone number, email and sometimes links to professional networking sites, including LinkedIn. You can also include links to other websites that may demonstrate your professional capabilities, including links to your portfolio, or any academic research or articles that you have been involved in.
Cover letter headers should hook employers in – so great design is essential. With sophisticated layouts, alluring fonts and sensible colour selections, we’ll make sure that your header captures the attention of employers in an instant. Browse through our cover letter templates to check out our cover letter header examples!
Personalised cover letter greetings
The best cover letters address your employers politely and directly. For example, “Dear Mr. O’Connor” or “Dear Mrs. Murphy'' are fantastic ways to greet employers. Avoid using language that may be interpreted as impolite or unprofessional. We always recommend personalising a cover letter as much as possible, so always use their name if it is known.
If you’re unsure of your potential employers’ name, try to do some additional research to see if you can find out. You might even like to contact the company to find out. People like the feeling of recognition that comes with reading their own names, and are more likely to answer a letter that has been directly addressed to them.
Cover letter introductions that count
Introductions are essential to establishing a relationship with your employer. We recommend doing additional research on the company to identify their brand tone of voice and matching that voice as best as you possibly can. Be sure to mention the job role you’re applying for, and use actionable, descriptive language throughout your cover letter. Since you’re an academic, you might like to include the number of years of job experience you have, your degree(s) and where you got your qualifications from, especially if you’re applying for an academic position. Don’t be afraid to showcase your strengths, especially if they’re particularly outstanding and likely to stand out to employers. If you get stuck, we’ve got a ton of examples for you to take a look at:
Every accomplished individual has a teacher or mentor who has inspired them throughout their journey. Teaching is an essential underpinning for any career, and I am highly motivated and excited for the chance to apply for a lecturer role at Trinity College Dublin. For every great explorer, doctor, lawyer and teacher, someone in the academic field inspired, taught or motivated them to take up their career pathway. Teaching makes all other careers possible. I have always respected the College's highly esteemed academic standards; and I am hopeful that I will be considered for the position.
Your body paragraphs are where you outline why you’re the ideal candidate for the job. Share more information about your work history and educational background and relate it back to the job role. It might be helpful to ask yourself the following questions: What do I have to offer to this job role? Why would they be interested in hiring me? How does my professional experience relate to what they’re looking for? Remember, try to keep your cover letter as personalised as possible. Here’s some great examples to help you out:
I have a strong academic background in education, having already obtained both a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree from Trinity College Dublin. I also received a second Master’s Degree, a Master of Science, from the University of Edinburgh, specializing in Human Geography. As a result of my academic background, I am thrilled to have the opportunity to apply for the role of Geography lecturer at the College. I have a deep and avid interest in understanding how geography plays a role in today’s world and how academia can inspire students to contribute to our society within a geographical context.
I firmly believe that to be a successful lecturer, one must be deeply passionate about the subjects they are teaching. Throughout my studies I have seen that
the most successful lecturers have the capability of captivating their students and motivating them to think deeply about topics which have the potential to shape our world. I have a strong cognitive ability, excellent communication abilities, and robust, ever-growing knowledge in Geography.
Your final paragraph should serve as both a thank you to your potential employer for taking the time to read over your documents and a call to action that invites them to contact you. You’ll want to emphasise that they can contact you and you’re looking forward to connecting with them. End your cover letter with a friendly, personable sign-off, such as “Yours sincerely,” “Best wishes” or “Kind regards,” followed by your name. Check out our examples:
I have attached my portfolio with examples of my academic work which has been featured in academic journals and featured in international case studies. If you have any questions or would like to arrange a time to discuss this position, please do not hesitate to contact me. I hope to hear from you soon. Thank you very much.
Your dream career is closer than ever
Cover letters are an important part of connecting with potential employers. At CVapp.ie, we believe that everyone should have access to the tools and resources that will help them get closer to their dream careers. You can check out our website for more pro tips, articles and tools to help your professional journey. We wish you the best of luck in your career journey, and always remember that we have a ton of professional resources on our website to help you out. All the best!