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Technical Interview Prep: Sorting


The concept of sorting is fundamental in the software engineering process as well as in engineering interviews.

Your interviewer is likely to ask a sorting question.

Sorting questions in a technical interview

  • Data may already have been sorted by the interviewer. You will then be asked to sort it in a more efficient way.
  • A coding problem requires sorting to be solved efficiently, which the interviewer will ask you to solve.
  • The coding problem requires the use of a sorting algorithm.

Types of Sorting Algorithms

  • Insertion sort - Best for short lists, stable, and in-place.
  • Quicksort - Often fastest in practice, can be in-place but not stable.
  • Mergesort - Stable but not in-place.
  • Heap sort - In-place and better worst-case runtime than quicksort