Data Science Interview Questions and Answers

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Data Science Interview Questions and Answers

In the current age of technology and big data, data science is emerging as one of the most desirable and attractive fields to work as is revealed in discussions on This has also made it appealing for businesses and companies from virtually all fields, given the benefits that accrue from having a competent data scientist or two in-house, as is discussed on However, one thing that is clear, something that all experts in this field agree on, including those over at, is that the data science field is not one that is easy to get into. This has to do with the requirements needed in order to get in which include having a degree in mathematics or statistics or one in engineering as an alternative. Over and above the requisite educational requirements, one is also required to have had enough practice with real life problems to make them more attractive to employers. Even with the right resume, you can still run into problems in the interview itself, that is why this article will come in handy as it will highlight some common interview questions as well as relevant answers.

A question that you will always be asked in interviews has to do with the tools and devices that you require to do your job as a data scientist. Interviewers ask this question to get a feel of your knowledge as far as programming languages and applications are concerned and if you are going to require any additional training if you get the job, as per The answers for this question should include the interviewee stating their conversance in tools such as SAS and R programming, understanding of PHP, Python or Java programming as well as experience of using data visualization tools such as Tableau with more on Another very important question you need to expect and prepare for is the one that deals with how you as the interviewee is able to identify performance barriers. This, according to the experts on, is an important question as it enables the interviewer to find out how you will be able to tackle real-world issues as a data scientist. Your answer should as such include examples of problem solving methods, steps taken to identify these performance barriers as well as benchmarks for assessing performance.

Another very popular question to expect for any interview, including a data science interview, involves you being asked why you want to work at that particular company as a data scientist. The industry experts over at, explain that the purpose of this question is to unearth exactly what motivated and inspired you to apply for the job in the first place. Your answer here should reveal a passion not only in data science but also in working in that particular company. The folks at recommend that your answer should reveal respect for the company and its practices and show that you share the same passion in things such as data mining. The next question that is commonly asked in data science interviews has to do with how the prior experience you have acquired has prepared you for a role in data science if you get the job. The aim of this question is to reveal how experienced the interviewee is holistically. Such things as communication skills are very important for a data scientist, as per, and this is what this question looks to reveal. Your answer as such should bring out clearly your project management skills, ability to work in a team environment as well as problem solving skills.

The next question we will look at, one according to the industry experts at can’t fail to be asked, is one that deals with how you intend to deal with your findings being challenged. This happens all of the time in a work environment, as per, a data scientist results will be challenged, and the purpose of this question is to reveal your conflict resolution skills in the workplace, especially in a team environment. Your answer should therefore, bring out your interpersonal skills and how you plan to use them to demonstrate leadership, encourage discussion as well as acknowledging and respecting different opinions even those divergent to yours. Another popular question, according to, is the one that looks to find out the methods you employ to pinpoint outliers within a given data set. This question is meant to show if the interviewee is able to transfer the knowledge they gained in the classroom to solve real-world problems. Your answer should therefore bring out your analytical skills and should include such things as raw data analysis, approaches and models that are practical and relevant.

There are of course many more questions that are likely to come up in a data science interview, but it is our hope that the above information will prove helpful. For more on this and other topics please check out as well as and