Exposing Early CS Majors to Coding Interview Practices: An HBCU Case Study

Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Title

2021 Conference on Research in Equitable and Sustained Participation in Engineering, Computing, and Technology (RESPECT)

Publication Date


Date Added



The demand for candidates to fill job vacancies in the field of Computer Science (CS), especially in the industry sector, is high. Yet, the supply of CS candidates to fill these positions remain low. Student attrition in CS departments and their inability to produce a sufficient representation of candidates can attribute to one aspect of this problem. Another reason is a candidate's inability to showcase the appropriate skill-sets and related preparation needed for such career-based opportunities. One approach has been to incorporate industry-based practices into the CS classroom as a way to equip and prepare majors for such expectations. Coding interview exercises are one notable practice. Aspects of this particular practice have been examined in academic settings. However, there is a lack of current studies that examine this type of practice at earlier stages of a CS curriculum. This article discusses a case study for exposing early CS majors to relative coding interview practices in the form of whiteboard problem solving. During the Fall 2020 semester, a PRE and POST virtual whiteboard problem-solving exercise were conducted on a CS2 and Object-Oriented Programming course at a Mid-Atlantic HBCU in the United States. The results revealed that majority of the students in both courses were able to complete the problem sets for both exercises successfully. Likewise, both groups expressed a favorable perception about these exercises, and exhibited adequate levels of comfort for completing these exercises. However, both groups also showed adequate levels of anxiety.






Technology, Economic Advancement


Computer Sciences

Comments/Extra Notes

Additional authors: Kimble-Brown, Quinlan; Rogers, Chauncey; Lewis, Myles; Esema, Joseph; Clinkscale, Ben; Williams, Krystal L.