8 essential topics to crack coding interviews in 2021

If you’re applying for a software engineering position of some kind, chances are you’ll encounter some sort of technical interview or coding challenge. For newer engineers applying for software programming roles, the coding interview is oftentimes the most terrifying part.

Reading Time: 4 minutes

However, if you’re well prepared for few things listed in this article, you may be in good position to crack your coding interview. TWT break it down to the 8 essential topics for you to crack your next coding interview along with some useful links to learning materials of the relevant topics.

1. Data Structure

This is probably the most important topic for coding interviews and you should prepare it well. At a bare minimum, you should know about the array, linked list, binary trees, binary search trees, self-balanced-trees like AVL tree, hash table( or map or directories as known in Java or Python) stack, queue, and graph.

Learning Resources

2. Algorithms

While it’s important to know the essential data structure like an array, linked list, and trees, it’s equally important to know how to work with those data structures. If you don’t know the difference between linear search and binary search algorithms, and what it means to run in O(Log n) as opposed to O(n^2), you need some time learning algorithms.

Learning Resources:

3. System Design

This is another crucial topic you need to prepare well for your programming job interviews, especially at big tech companies like Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and Facebook. You need to have some ideas about how to design your solution from architecture to coding.

Learning Resources:

4. Multithreading & Concurrency

Concurrency is one of the most desired skills by employers, and also one of the most advanced topics brought up in interviews. Because it shows your ability to design a program that efficiently uses resources but at the same time it’s a very tricky topic to master and that’s why interviewers love it. Concurrency can be used to gauge your expertise and technical depth and is often uses as a key deciding factor in your overall hiring level.

Learning Resources:

5. Database Design & SQL

As a Software Developer, working with a relational database is a critical skill that you’ll need, and it’ll stick with you no matter where you’re in your career. Every company from small to large uses a DBMS, so it’s likely that you’ll come across different data models, types of databases (noSQL and SQL), and dependencies.

Learning Resources:

6. Linux Commands & Concepts

Linux is the world’s most popular operating system for server-side application and most of the cutting-edge solution runs on Linux, that’s why it’s very important for you to learn how to use a Linux machine. While programming interviews don’t focus much on linux unless you’re going for IT support or DevOps interviews, it’s always great to learn essential Linux concepts and commands.

Learning Resources:

7. Computer Networks

Along with computer science basics, one more topic which you can prepare well is computer networks. At a bare minimum, you should know about essential protocols like HTTP, FTP, SSH, TCP, UDP, etc.

Learning Resources:

8. OOP Concepts

Last but not the least, Object oriented programming concepts, also known as the OOP concept, is another essential topic you should prepare for programming job interviews. At least you should be familiar with basic building blocks of OOP like Abstraction, Polymorphism, Encapsulation, Inheritance, classes & objects, etc.

Learning Resources: