Top 10 Coding Interview Questions & What to Look for in the Answers

by Sandra Jenkins

In the rapidly evolving tech landscape, hiring the best talent is crucial. That’s why we’ve curated the top 10 coding interview questions to help you make informed decisions. Moreover, knowing what to look for in the answers will streamline your hiring process. As a bonus, you can find these tests ready to use in the comprehensive test library at, your go-to pre-employment assessment platform.

1. How would you describe object-oriented programming (OOP)?

Look for answers that highlight encapsulation, inheritance, polymorphism, and abstraction. The candidate’s ability to explain these complex concepts with ease indicates a solid understanding of OOP.

2. How do you find the time complexity of an algorithm?

The candidate should mention Big O notation, and be able to explain it clearly. They might also discuss worst-case, best-case, and average-case scenarios.

3. Can you explain recursion and provide an example?

A strong response will include a clear definition, an example, and an explanation of when recursion should be used. The answer may also cover potential pitfalls, such as stack overflow.

4. What are the differences between a linked list and an array?

This question tests fundamental knowledge of data structures. Ideal answers will mention memory allocation, insertion, and deletion operations, and access time.

5. How would you manage a memory leak in your code?

Candidates should discuss prevention strategies, such as proper use of deallocators and garbage collection. This question tests the candidate’s understanding of memory management and their ability to debug complex problems.

6. How can multithreading be implemented in [insert your required programming language here]?

This question allows candidates to showcase their knowledge of a specific language. They should discuss potential advantages and challenges, such as data sharing, race conditions, and synchronization.

7. Can you describe the Model-View-Controller (MVC) design pattern?

The candidate should correctly explain the roles of the Model, View, and Controller components. A strong answer may also include when and why to use MVC.

8. How would you handle error and exception handling in your code?

The candidate should describe the importance of robust error and exception handling, including specific methods for doing so in a chosen language. Look for references to “try-catch” blocks and logging best practices.

9. How would you secure a web application from common threats such as SQL Injection and XSS?

An ideal response will mention input validation, parameterized queries, encoding user input, and keeping software up-to-date. This question reveals the candidate’s awareness of secure coding practices.

10. How do you stay updated on new coding languages, tools, and best practices?

This open-ended question can reveal a lot about a candidate’s passion for continuous learning. Look for references to specific resources, like blogs, podcasts, or conferences.
These top 10 coding interview questions and what to look for in the answers should arm you with the necessary information to make informed hiring decisions. If you’re looking for a seamless way to incorporate these questions into your hiring process, offers a ready-to-use test library. Let Hirenest take care of the technicalities while you focus on spotting the right talent.

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