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Software Engineer Interview Questions and Answers


Aspire to work as a Software Engineer but scared of the interview?  Don’t be.  Interviews are taken to test your personality, knowledge, application skills and efficiency.  Many IT companies and other technical agencies take interviews every year to hire software engineers.  Working as a software engineer in a reputed company can be very beneficial for career and personal growth and development.  The key to crack any interview is following basic etiquettes and answering the questions confidently.  Confidence can be boosted if you already know the set of questions or the type of questions asked in an interview with a Software Engineer.  Below mentioned are the top thirty Software Engineer Interview Questions and Answers for guidance.  They can be helpful for both freshers and experienced candidates.  The answers given are like an example. 

Basic investigative software engineer interview questions

1. What is system analysis? 

Ans. System analysis is one of the vital stages of the Software development cycle.  It is a lengthy process and a crucial one.  Wrong analysis can be very costly and will affect all other stages.  It includes detailed reviewing of the existing system, analysis, and making decisions. The result of this process is the preparation of a report which consists of all the details and information needed.  

2. Difference between program and Software? 

Ans. A program consists of Programming code, whereas Software is like a package.  It consists of Programming code, documentation, and providing a user guide.  

3. Explain the stages of preliminary investigation? 

Preliminary investigation is the primary stage which contains other steps to be followed. This process is carried out when the request of the client or user is received.The preliminary investigation involves Request Clarification,Feasibility Study, and Request approval.  

  • Request clarification – It includes the study of the current system, the exact requirements of the user or client.Clarify the needs and functions to be included in the Software.
  • Feasibility study- This is a crucial stage where all aspects such as economic aspect, technical competency, the operational study are considered, and then the decision is taken. This feasibility study gives an idea of whether the project is beneficial and can be carried out within the existing capacity and Software of the organization. 
  • Approval of Request- The final report prepared from the feasibility study is analyzed, and the decision is taken whether to undertake the project or not. If all is good, the user’s request is approved, and software development work gets started. 

4. What do you mean by the software project manager?  

Ans. The person responsible for carrying out or managing a software development project is the software project manager.  He has to report all the work to the head authorities.  The Software project manager has to make others do all the managing tasks related to time, cost, and quality management if the Software is developed.  Constant supervision and checking whether all the activities are taking place on time as per the given specifications.  He is like the head of the given project. 

5. Mention some software analysis and design tools? 

Ans. Some software analysis and design tools are:  

  • Structured Charts
  • Data Flow Diagrams
  • Structured English
  • HIPO diagrams
  • Data Dictionary

6. What do you mean by Software Configuration Management? 

Ans. Software configuration management promotes tracking and controlling changes that take place in the Software. Control of the changes is essential as it ensures consistency of the Software changes and helps to identify whether the changes made are within the organization rules and policies.  

(Basic investigative questions are related to the syllabus you studied so far and the basics of software and other engineering related terms. Give proper answers, but don’t stretch too much.) 

Software Engineering Concept related interview questions 

Software engineers must know the software engineering concepts as the meanings of various concepts and terminologies are asked to see the candidate’s conceptual knowledge. Software Engineer interview questions related to concepts are as follows: 

7. What is SDLC?  

Ans. SDLC stands for Software Development Life Cycle.  It is an essential term and contains various stages like Requirement gathering, system analysis, Coding, Design, Testing, Maintenance and Documentation, which all together complete the Software development process.  Several SDLC Models are available, like Waterfall Model, Iterative Model, Spiral Model, etc. 

8. Explain Software metrics? 

Ans. Software metrics gives measures related to the Software Development process and Software product. It is mainly divided into three categories such as process metrics, requirements metrics and product metrics.It includes length requirements, completeness, test metrics, Evaluation of budget, scheduling human resources and much more.  

9. Explain Project Management Tools and give some examples?

Ans. The project manager uses project management tools for the proper development of the Software.Some of the popular project management tools are Pert charts, Gantt Charts, Resource Histogram, Reports etc.  

10.What do you know about Aspect-oriented Programming?  

Ans. Aspect-Oriented Programming is to separate the Code in a way that various objects carry the independent  objects and main tasks carry the subsidiary tasks.

11. Elaborate on the meaning of functional programming?  

Ans. Functional programming is a kind of programming language which makes use of mathematical concepts and functions. It helps the Software Engineer in the production of results irrespective of the program state.It promotes efficiency and accuracy. 

12. Explain proto-typing in brief?  

Ans. Proto-typing is the basis for developing system specifications. Using pro-typing, one can revise the design quality, manage the system more efficiently, upgrade the system usability, validate requirements and decrease development efforts.  There are two methods of proto-typing: Evolutionary proto-typing and throwaway proto-typing.  

  • Evolutionary prototyping: In this method, the initial prototype is arranged, and it is then sent through the number of phases to the final stage.
  • Throw-away prototyping: By implementing this, a production of a rough practical implementation of the system is seen. The issues regarding requirements can be identified here. 

Interview Questions on system software

These Software Engineer Interview questions include questions related to system software, how it works, some crucial terminologies, advantages and disadvantages as well. Here are a few questions that can be asked. 

13. What is system re-engineering?  

Ans. In order to improve the maintainability of a system.The process which is carried out to retain the efficiency and functionality is called system re-engineering.  

14. State the different categories of Software?  

Ans. There are different categories of Software like System Software,Embedded software,Artificial Intelligence Software, Scientific Software, Web Applications, and Application Software. 

15. How can one find the size of a software product? 

Ans. By counting the lines of the delivered software code or by counting the lines of the delivered function points, the user can know the size of the software product.  

16. What are the requirements of the Software? 

Ans. For this software engineer interview question, you could say;  System Software requires a Functional description of the proposed Software.It is known as the target software requirements.Various other requirements related to the research, code language, Request recognition are required to be completed before starting the development process.Non-functional requirements such as the size, look, and The Software Developer should also consider the appearance of the Software suggested by the user.  

17. Explain the concept of Modularization? 

Ans. It is the process of dividing the task into small modules. These modules are independent of each other, and tasks in each module can be carried out separately. 

18. Elaborate Baselines? 

Ans. Baselines are put forth to track the overall project delivery. The project managers put them forth. They help in tracking all the tasks listed. Overall, tracking and controlling and executing the project becomes easier for the manager with the help of these baselines.

Software Engineer Interview Questions related to algorithms

19. What are the types of acceptance testing?

Ans. Alpha and Beta tests are the two types of acceptance testing. They are as follows:  

Alpha test: The alpha testing is attesting in which the customer tests the version of complete Software under the supervision of the developer. This testing is implemented at the developer’s site.

Beta test: Beta testing is a testing in which the customer tests the software version without the developer being present. This testing is performed at the customer’s site.

20. What is a State Transition Diagram? 

Ans. A state transition diagram is a collection of states and events. It also describes what actions are to be taken on the occurrence of particular events. Events result in the change in the operation of the states. 

21. Difference between stable and unstable sorting algorithms?  Explain. 

Ans.The sorting where the order of the elements remains the same is called stable sorting, while unstable sorting results in the change of the order.

Example- Quicksort is unstable while merge sort is stable. 

22. Write Code to implement Level Order Search in a Binary Tree? 

Ans.First visit sibling nodes then go down to the next level. You can use a Queue to apply a level order search in a binary tree. 

23. Without using the third variable, how can you swap two numbers? 


a = 3;

b = 5;

a = a + b; //8

b = a — b; // 3

a = a — b; //5

Now you have a = 5 and b = 3, so numbers are exchanged without using a temp variable.

24. Kindly state what you know about Bit Rotation in short? 

Ans. A rotation is similar to shift except for the fact that the bits which fall off at one end is put back at the other end are called bit rotation.

In the left rotation, bits which fall off at the left end are put back at the right end. 

The bits that fall off at the right end are put back at the left end in proper rotation.

(In such types of Software engineer interview questions, be precise, pay attention to details, though you take time to answer but give correct answers.) 

Advanced software engineer interview Questions 

25. What are the aspects included in the feasibility study?  

Ans. To make the project beneficial for the organization as well as fulfil the client’s requirements, a feasibility study is carried out in an organization; after studying it thoroughly, doing all the analysis, the final report is made. The feasibility study includes the study of various aspects.  Some of them are as follows- 

Economic feasibility study: It includes studying various costs like cost of training, cost of additional research and tools. It also includes the preparation of estimated costs and analyzing the benefits of the project.  

Technical feasibility study: It considers technical problems and conditions. Assessing the suitability of OS and machine(s) on which the Software will execute, knowledge of the software development and tools available for this project.

Operational feasibility study: Is it worth conducting the project in the estimated costs, will it be suitable for the organization to work and complete on the following project are the matters studied under this aspect relating to the operation and functioning of the project. 

26. What do you mean by Entity Relationship Diagram and DFD? 

Ans. The entity Relationship Diagram is the graphical description of the object relationship pair. It is primarily used in database applications.

DFD stands for Data Flow Diagram. Data Flow Diagram depicts the data flow and the transforms which are applied to the data as it moves from input to output.

27. What are the steps to be followed in testing? 

Ans. The steps followed in testing are:

Unit testing: The individual elements are tested in this type of testing.

Module testing: Related group of independent items is tested.

Subsystem testing: This is a type of integration testing. Different modules are integrated into a subsystem, and the entire subsystem is tested.

System testing: The entire system is tested in this system.

Acceptance testing: This type of testing contains testing of the system with user data. If the system behaves as per the client’s needs, then it is accepted.

28. Say something about maintenance? And explain the different types of software maintenance in brief?

Ans. Maintenance is like a process in which changes are implemented in the existing system by either modifying the system’s structure or adding new components to the Software. 

Types of software maintenance are:

Corrective Maintenance: It means the maintenance for correcting the software faults.

Adaptive maintenance: It means maintenance for adapting to the change in the environment.

Perfective maintenance: Meeting the new requirements by enhancing and modifying the system.

Preventive maintenance: Changes that are made to improve future maintainability.

29. Explain Black box and white box testing? 

Ans. Black box testing is done to validate the outputs alongside giving valid inputs. Unfortunately the implementation part of the program is not tested. White Box testing is done to validate the outputs, inputs, and program implementation that is involved in the process of execution.

30. What is a Data Dictionary? 

Ans. A data dictionary is utilized to capture the information related to naming conventions of objects and files utilized in the software project. It is also known as metadata. 

Additional information related to Software Engineer Interview Questions

Many software engineer interview questions that are asked related to the Preliminary investigation phase and other concepts. Questions related to programming algorithms can also be asked where the candidate is supposed to say the steps or explain the algorithms and codes.  The software engineer must have technical knowledge and clarity regarding concepts.

Get some information about the company and the Software it uses or develops. One must know the operation of that Software and other concepts. Software Engineer Interview Questions can also include an oral explanation of how to write a code or practical development. All your latest qualifications should be on the top of your file. 

The panel can ask other questions related to the differences between two concepts like quality assurance and quality control, software programming and Software development, system software and system analysis, and unit testing and module testing. 

About Software Engineering

Software Engineering is a vast subject. It has a lot of scope, and a software engineer has a lot of variety in the nature of the job or task to be performed. Various fields or posts are there in many IT Companies and Software Developing Companies. They have software design, Software Development, Software Maintenance, Software Requirements, and Software testing. One should be clear in which department or field they want to work in. The software engineer interview questions are based on the application skills and other implementation skills. The software engineer interview questions are almost from the same category, and few software engineer interview questions can be asked related to that particular field. Software Engineers are in demand, and this industry is never-ending. 

Software Design is also known as software architecture, as it is about the process of defining the architecture, components, and interfaces of the system. It is classified into three types: interface design, architecture design, and detailed design.

Software Development includes combining various programs and functions and constructing Software. It also includes testing the Software and debugging it. The efficiency and functionality of the Software must be up to the mark. 

The software Maintenance department is engaged in inculcating changes, enhancement of the existing features of the Software. Proper maintenance helps the company to reduce its costs and provide excellent efficiency. Maintenance of the Software is mandatory to cope up with the changing world.

The software requirements department handles the requirements of the user and analyzes the specifications needed. It includes the study of functional requirements, non-functional requirements and domain requirements.

Software testing is like investigating the quality of the software product. Various unit testing and integration testing methods are used to ensure the quality of the product. It analyses the Software’s working, bugs present in it and then proceeds to the rectification of the errors and quality control. 

Interview Tips 

The interview is taken to know more about the candidate like punctuality, thought-process, attitude, behaviour, nature, knowledge, communication skills, method or thinking of work. It gives an idea to the interviewee how well you present yourself and, importantly, how you apply your knowledge. Collect information related to the company and the work it does. Candidates must know the nature of the work the person on the post they are applying for needs to perform too. Read and collect information from frequently asked software engineer interview questions.

These are a few tips and notes to keep in mind for Software Engineer interviews for fresher as well as experienced applicants. 

  • Wear formal and comfortable clothes
  • Arrange all the documents properly in a sequential manner.
  • Take authentic documents along with an Id-proof
  • Ask for permission to be seated after greeting the panel
  • Answer fluently with confidence
  • Put your phone on silent mode
  • Don’t interrupt the interviewer 
  • Understand the question and listen carefully and then answer.
  • Be genuine and authentic. Try not to brag. 
  • While explaining any concept, use technical terms. 
  • Try to be calm and polite but clear. 
  • Give logical and positive answers.


The above mentioned are the top 30 questions asked in Software Engineer Interview questions with suggested answers. These software engineer interview questions are a mere guidance for candidates to prepare themselves accordingly and gather necessary information before an interview in front of the expert panel. A candidate must be prepared for an interview and create a good and lasting impact. Trying to be yourself and answer all the questions confidently and tactfully is essential. Do your research properly and be  precise while giving answers. The software engineer interview questions and answers can be formed and asked differently.  Software Engineering requires a lot of hard work and knowledge; a suitable job that will help one grow and implement the knowledge acquired so far is essential. An interview is a step that makes the company choose you among several applicants. Whether it be a fresher or an experienced person, facing an interview makes everyone nervous. The above software engineer interview questions can help prepare oneself and make an impression on the interviewer.

More Resources: Part time jobs in Bhubaneswar for students | Part time jobs in Dehradun for students | Programming Interview questions | HR Interview questions

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