Creating a cover letter: Quick reference guide


During a recruitment process you may be asked to forward an application that includes your resume and a cover letter so it’s a good idea to be prepared in advance. A cover letter is your introduction and first chance to make a good impression, so take this opportunity to highlight what you can offer the school, including your experience and attributes.

In this article, we’ve compiled a quick reference guide on what to include in your cover letter.

Before you begin

Make sure you have the ID numbers from your application for employment with the department and your Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) application, even if they are not yet finalised.

Finish writing your resume as it’s much more difficult to write the cover letter before the resume.

What to include

You don’t need to include your contact information as this is in your resume and application for teacher employment.

Opening paragraph

Start with a brief introduction about yourself and state the position you are applying for, or your job objective if not applying for a particular job. Explain your current situation⁠—whether you are working, have just returned from travel or are completing your final semester of study.

Qualifications and skills

Write 1 or 2 paragraphs to demonstrate you can do the job and that your skills will meet the school’s needs.

Consider the skills required for the role and what makes you the best candidate including any specialisations you bring. If you have had a similar job before, describe how it gave you the experience and skills that are needed for this role.

Your skills can be professional or personal, gained through previous jobs (both education and non-education roles), professional practice, work experience, voluntary work or other activities. You can also introduce 2 or 3 of your unique attributes to demonstrate how you will make an impact or get results in the role.

Your interest in teaching in a Queensland state school

Show your motivation and enthusiasm, how you can fit in to the school community and add value. Reference some information about the school and let them know why you want to work there. You could mention the school’s reputation, culture, ethos, or philosophy and align your own teaching philosophy or ethos to this. Show that you have done some research on the role and how you are a good fit.

Closing paragraph

Finish your cover letter in a professional manner. Consider something formal such as: 'Thank you for taking the time to consider my application. I look forward to hearing from you.'

Conclude with 'Yours sincerely' and your full name (as per your resume and application). Including your employment application and QCT ID numbers in your signature block would be helpful. This shows you have already submitted an application and can be identified in the system.

There is no 'one-size-fits-all' approach to creating a cover letter, however we recommend that you keep the length to a single page. Have a look online for some examples and ideas for a template that will work for you.

Further assistance

Also available are our other quick reference guides on resumes and professional profiles.

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Last updated 19 June 2020