What is the correct pronunciation of a resume?
While the word resume is a fairly common word among job seekers and recruiters, the word comes with three variations in its spelling that are differed by the placement and absence of accents.
So, when you see the words Résumé, Resumé, and Resume, you may wonder, is there a difference in their pronunciation, or which of these spellings is the correct one?
Plus, if you have upcoming job interviews, you’d want to ensure that you’re pronouncing the word correctly to not make a fool out of yourself by pronouncing it re-zoom-ay or ray-su-may.
Fret not, you’re in the right place to put your query to rest.
Additionally, if you are reading this word as a verb, which means to begin something again, it is pronounced ri-zoom. But, if you’re reading this word as a noun, referring to an official document summarizing your professional trajectory, it is pronounced rez-oo-mey.
Read on to get clarity on resume pronunciation and other related FAQs like the following:
- What is the meaning of a resume?
- What are the different resume accents?
- Is it Resume or Resumé or Résumé?
- What are some tips for the correct resume pronunciation?
What is a Resume?
As stated earlier, a resume as a noun is an official document that showcases a candidate’s skills, professional experiences, educational background, and other information that may be necessary to land a job.
However, resume as a noun is commonly used only in US and Canada. Most European countries refer to resumes as Curriculum Vitae or CVs.
Talking about the history of the word “Résumé” comes from the French word “resumer” which means to summarize. It was first used in the 17th century as a noun, and in the 19th century, its meaning went on to shift from a summary to its current meaning.
Although the requirement of resumes comes up during the job search process, it is also used during college admissions, education opportunities, and internships.
And the correct resume pronunciation in American English is “re-zoo-may”, which lays emphasis on the second syllable, which sounds like the word zoom.
And the first “e” in the word must be pronounced with a slightly longer ending than the second “e” to ensure a correct resume pronunciation.
Resume Accents - Résumé, Resumé
Even though the most common spelling is “resume”, the word has two more variations - résumé and resumé with slightly different pronunciations.
Let’s go over them one by one.
Along with “resume”, the word “résumé” with two accents is a preferred spelling in US and Canada.
It is pronounced as “ray-zoo-may”, with an emphasis on the first syllable.
While using this version of a resume with two accents looks professional in a linguistic or academic setting, it is rarely used in everyday life by job seekers and employers.
The word “Resumé” with a single accent is a preferred spelling in British or UK English. It is commonly used in European countries as well as other countries like Australia and New Zealand.
It can be correctly pronounced as “rez-oo-may”, with emphasis on the second syllable.
Here’s how you can write Résumé or Resumé with accents in Word and other software:
- For Windows: Press the ALT key and the corresponding number code for the letter you want to accent (e.g. "Alt + 0233" for "é" for resume). If you have in-built accent keys, you can use that as well.
- For Mac (with touchpad): You can simply press the word or alphabet “e” for a few seconds and select the accent option for the touchpad.
- To type resume in Word, press CTRL + '(Apostrophe) + e to get é.
Or you can always copy-paste the version you want to use from Google.
Also Read: How to list work experience on a resume?
Is it Resume or Resumé or Résumé
So, since we’ve already established the different spellings and resume pronunciations, which one should you use? Or which version is the best one?
Let’s have a look at what the dictionaries say:
Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary: According to this dictionary, while all forms of the word are correct, resumé is considered the least common
Oxford Advanced American Dictionary: Oxford suggests that all three alternatives - resume, resumé, and résumé are correct
American Heritage Dictionary: Also suggests that “résumé, resume, and resumé are all acceptable spellings with respective pronunciation.
Essential American English Dictionary by Cambridge: While this dictionary suggests that the words résumé and resume are synonymous and correct, it doesn’t mention the variant “resumé.”
Meanwhile, the common style guides Associated Press Stylebook (AP) advises users to use and pronounce the word with no accent at all, and the Chicago Manual of Style suggests using accents in borrowings.
Hence, we can conclude that all the variants of resume pronunciation and its spellings are correct, and the user can be the judge of which variant they prefer.
Also Read: How to list your skills on a resume?
Tips for Correct Resume Pronunciation
If you are unsure about your resume pronunciation, given below are some tips you can follow to perfect it and feel more confident:
- Find online recordings on YouTube or watch videos where people use the word resume while speaking in a video and imitate their resume pronunciation.
- Practice saying resume out loud in front of the mirror or before family or friends till you get comfortable with pronouncing the word correctly.
- Consider recording yourself while pronouncing the word to determine your progress.
- Practice is key - put in the effort to practice resume pronunciation till you perfect it.
- Find a native speaker and seek help from them to get your resume pronunciation right.
- Use online resources like YouTube, Frovo, Google Translate, and Merriam-Webster that offer audio recordings of the word.
- Seek phonetic spellings online to help you learn the correct resume pronunciation.
Also Read: How to write a job-winning resume in 2023?
Key Points from the Blog
- Resume as a noun is used commonly only in US and Canada. Most European countries refer to resumes as Curriculum Vitae or CVs.
- And the correct resume pronunciation in American English is “re-zoo-may”, which lays emphasis on the second syllable, which sounds like the word zoom.
- Even though the most common version of this word’s spelling is “resume”, the word has two more variations - résumé and resumé with slightly different pronunciations.
- Resumé can be correctly pronounced as “rez-oo-may”, with emphasis on the second syllable.
- Résumé is pronounced as “ray-zoo-may”, with an emphasis on the first syllable.
- All the variants of resume pronunciation and its spellings are correct and the user can be the judge of which variant they prefer.
- Finding online recordings on YouTube or watching videos with resume pronunciation is a good way to perfect it.