As many of you know, some books about this topic have been written. I've seen questions that are of historic value, and/or discussions about them. Some include:

This query shows some additional results, too.

The open/closed ratio of interview questions suggests that it's off-topic. However, if you look at the questions themselves, those that have been closed are often asking what to expect during an interview, rather than having an actual question/problem and its answer.

My thought was that, if a single post meant to be a collection of interview questions and their answers existed, it'd be:

  1. More immediately accessible than a book
  2. Less prone to become outdated like a book
  3. More informative regarding how question trends change, if any exist at all

The goal was to have the community post interview questions they're familiar with, provide an answer to the problem, and explain the answer in detail for it to be useful.

Given the site's encouragement to share our own knowledge, the fact that we'd be looking at specific problems, and providing actual solutions, suggests to me that this could be considered on-topic.

A potential format for each post could be something like:

The Problem Statement

Problem statement here

What the Problem Statement Seeks to Show

Offer an explanation of what the problem statement actually means or supposed to prove about the candidate being interviewed.

An Answer and/or Solution

This is my solution to the problem above, including code if necessary.

An Explanation of the Answer and/or Solution

This is my explanation of why my solution is correct

While I, personally, don't think interview questions are necessarily an accurate and/or reasonable representation of a candidate's capabilities or lack thereof (e.g. nerves have gotten the better of me in past interviews), discussing whether interview questions prove and/or show what they supposedly prove and/or show is different and not the intention of the posts, b/c it's too opinionated.

If posting such a question in SE.SE is off-topic, is there a way in which it can be worded/proposed so that it is on-topic? If not, is there another SE site where it would be on-topic without much dispute?

  • 2
    Possible duplicate of Why do interview questions make poor Software Engineering.SE questions?
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jun 4, 2017 at 6:57
  • 1
    And by the way, I guess the "Scrum Master Interview Question" was not closed so far because the community overlooked this >5 year old low-profile question. Maybe it will become closed now, since by your link you drawed some attention to it.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jun 4, 2017 at 7:00
  • @DocBrown I was not aware of that post, but after reading through it, it looks like there're some differences worth noting. For example, some reasons listed include that some questions are "too broad", problems not being "clearly defined", and so on. These are things that I think I've specifically addressed. For example, making sure there're specific and clearly defined problems would be part of the point.
    – code_dredd
    Commented Jun 4, 2017 at 7:02
  • @DocBrown It's likely that these questions can be found independent of each other in SO or SE if we search long enough. (I did not try this before making this post, though.)
    – code_dredd
    Commented Jun 4, 2017 at 7:03

1 Answer 1


If a question comes from an interview is not a decision criteria for beeing suitable for the site in itself. A question which

  • has a clear problem statement
  • fits to the SDLC
  • tells what the OP tried and why it did not suit their needs
  • is focussed enough for not needing a whole book to be answered
  • might be applicable to a real-world situation

can be asked here, and if the OP gives an additional side note that this was originally an interview question should be of minor concern. In fact, there should be no reason to mention the origin of the question if it is a good one.

However, if a question

  • is very broad or opinionated
  • is open to a variety of interpretations
  • encourages a broader discussion
  • is very artificial or contrived

it will not be a good fit for this site, and it won't become better if one tries to press it under the headlines you suggested.

The issue with most interview question is, they tend to be of the second category. If you actually feel you need to mention a question you asked was from an interview, it is probably because you want to explain why the question looks so artificial or contrived, or why it is so broad, and that is a clear sign the question does not belong here.

  • I think this is a fair point, mostly due to the often contrived nature of the questions. Is there a suggestion as to where it might be considered appropriate within the StackExchange network?
    – code_dredd
    Commented Jun 4, 2017 at 11:10
  • 1
    @ray: sorry, I don't know any SE site where such questions are suited. The network does not provide a home for every thinkable question ;-)
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jun 4, 2017 at 12:08

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