A review of Codela as a software engineer interview prep tool

Hi, I’m Brian, a former senior software engineer and now software engineering mentor at Pathrise. I have worked with hundreds of job-seekers to optimize their job search and get results like 3x more responses to their applications, 2x higher interview scores, and 10-20% increases in compensation through negotiation alone. Check out this article to learn more about the Codela platform, costs, and student reviews.

What does Codela do?

Codela hosts coding challenges to help aspiring software engineers practice for technical interviews. While all their material comes from user uploads, the platform currently hosts over 90 extensive coding challenges, including real interview questions from top tech companies like Amazon and Facebook.

 

First, users select a question from a specific company or software engineering topic. Challenge topics include arrays, strings, linked lists, stacks, queues, and trees. Questions may also test the user’s knowledge of bit manipulation, object oriented design, recursion, dynamic programming, scalability, memory limits, sorting, searching, and other more advanced software engineering subjects. Some brain teasers, graph questions, and even probability challenges are included.

 

Users run their code in a real-time coding window with 10+ programming languages available. All challenges come with an extensive solution as well as a discussion tab where users can offer pointers for similar questions. In addition to hosting a blog full of interview tips, the platform has been known to run live coding competitions for extra practice.

Who is Codela for?

Codela is designed for aspiring software engineers seeking realistic coding challenges for extra technical interview practice. The wide variety of questions from real tech interviews could be a good fit for people preparing for interviews at FAANG companies. Their free, community based system could also be a good match for busy job seekers looking for a flexible platform they can use for casual practice on their own time.

What does Codela cost? How much work is involved?

The platform is completely free and open to absolutely anyone. However, since Codela only hosts coding challenges and does not offer any technical training, users should already have at least some software engineering background.

Ratings and reviews

Codela has received mostly positive reviews. The platform holds a 4/5 star rating on Capterra based on just 1 reviewer, who described the challenges as “great” but “best for beginners.” The user felt it was a terrific “way to learn new languages and practice programming” for interviews. However, they had some difficulty with the interface, warning “we need more plugins.” They only rated the customer service 3/5 stars for technical difficulties.

The platform holds a 4.85/5 star rating on Product Hunt. One user appreciated that the platform was “free, fun, and useful.” Another described the platform as “very helpful in college” for slightly less experienced coders. However, they were disappointed that there was “no scoring system” yet. Another reviewer agreed that users could tell it was “a relatively new platform”, and others were annoyed that they couldn’t practice in incognito browsers or run their code without signing into their accounts. On the whole though, users seem quite satisfied with Codela’s free technical interview challenges.

Alternatives to Codela

If you choose not to join Codela, there are a number of other similar interview prep platforms to help aspiring software engineers launch their careers.

  • Another user-generated service, Codewars hosts coding challenges published by their own community.
  • Aspiring software engineers can also look into Interview Cake, which teaches students the best ways to think about and solve technical interview questions. Questions come with a full solution breakdown, a list of common mistakes, and even a “what we learned” section. Read more about Interview Cake in our review.
  • For aspiring software engineers seeking a more advanced platform than Codela, Leetcode could be a good option. They host interview questions with a wide range of difficulties. All questions include detailed solutions to help users understand how to approach similar challenges.
  • Job seekers looking for an interview prep tool with a wider variety of tech topics can check out HackerRank. Their platform hosts questions on software engineering, data science, and even UX/UI design.
  • The paid interview prep platform AlgoExpert hosts 90+ common data structures, algorithms, and problem-solving questions across 14 categories and 5 difficulty levels. Just like Codela, users can write code in a handful of popular languages, using an in-browser coding window to write and run code instantly.
  • Similarly, Codebasil hosts interview questions written by software engineers at top tech companies like Facebook, Apple, and Amazon.
  • The study tool Learneroo hosts practice technical questions that often come up in interviews. Their program is free to try, with paid membership options for greater access to materials.
  • Another interview resource, Coderbyte offers a mix of free and paid challenges for software engineers looking to sharpen their skills. Learn more about Coderbyte in our review.
  • Two more popular mock interview resources are Pramp and Gainlo. These platforms pair aspiring software engineers with their peers or anonymous engineers for mock interviews.
  • Aspiring software engineers seeking mock interviews at top tech companies can consider Interviewing.io. Their users are paired with FAANG engineers for mock interviews and extensive feedback. Find out if Interviewing.io is right for your career goals in our review.

How does Codela compare to Pathrise?

Codela is an online platform that helps aspiring software engineers prepare for technical interviews. However, Codela only hosts technical interview questions that users upload–the platform does not offer any technical training nor do they help people with their job search.

Pathrise is a career accelerator that works with people at each phase of the job search. Our technical interview curriculum teaches fellows to ace coding interviews while our career mentors help with everything else, including resume writing, portfolio optimization, cold emailing, behavioral interviewing, negotiation, and more. Our mentors have already helped 1,000+ students and professionals land great tech jobs, usually in just 3-5 months.

Since practicing with coding challenges keeps job-seekers’ skills sharp and gives them more confidence going into interviews, we recommend aspiring software engineers in our program review technical questions as often as possible. Since Codela is completely free and requires little commitment, people could use Codela concurrently with Pathrise to prepare for technical interviews. The platform could be especially helpful for Pathrise fellows with less coding experience and for those preparing for interviews at a specific tech company.

Pathrise optimizes the job search through 1-on-1 mentoring. With our tips and guidance, fellows in our program see their interview scores double and their application responses triple. If you want to work with any of our mentors to land your dream job, join Pathrise.

Apply today.

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