Job Interview Process Guide

After creating a guide for the technical interview process, I think the most important parts of the guide are how to approach studying for the interviews and non-technical parts. There is a ton of literature on how to do programming problems, but I felt like that was all I prepared for in my interviews. I wish I had prepared for the entire interview and not for just part of it. I also wish that I had a more concrete plan on how to study. I basically just took on random, but important topics everyday and did a ton of practice problems. I think with more organization, I would have had a little more success.

The best advice I ever received was to treat the interview like a game. It sounds kinda silly, but it makes it so you don’t take the interview too seriously. It also makes you realize that you should do the best you can and realize that all interview experience is good experience that you can use to improve yourself. I don’t believe that an interview can ever be a bad thing for a candidate. The fact that you even made it there is a success.

I think that higher education should be definitely keep in mind the demand of industry, but I caution against totally switching curriculum to help students study for interviews. While I think technical interviews are somewhat effective, I don’t think they are indicative of what the industry needs in Computer Scientists. Often technical interviews test your knowledge of computer architecture, operating systems, or application development, but that does not mean we should not have to take those courses. Even though I don’t write code in C in interviews, I value the knowledge it takes to write in C and I think it is one of the most important areas that I have learned at ND.

With the new changes the course structures (i.e. Data Structures sophomore year), I think that ND is on its way to being a university that prepares its Computer Science students pretty well for interviews. Here students are encouraged to fully understand concepts and not just crank out meaningless code.

I think the only thing that I would change about the ND curriculum would be that freshman engineering courses. To me, those seemed like a wasted year of courses when we could have been introduced to more useful concepts and topics.

Overall I think ND Computer Science is going in the right direction by getting important material to students faster (before interview season). I believe the future is very bright for ND’s ever growing Computer Science department.