One question to rule them all

Job interview in progress

Recently, while interviewing a person, I came up with an interesting question. That led to a series of discoveries about the interviewee. So I thought I would share it here.

How does xUnit work? **

This one question offered insight into various aspects that I cared about. I steered the discussion until I got the answers to these question, without asking them explicitly.

  • Do you know what unit testing is? – Awareness level
  • When do you write test cases? Before or after the change? – Practitioner skills
  • How does unit testing work? – Conceptual skills
  • Do you understand annotations? How are they used in JUnit / NUnit? – Advanced developer skills
  • Do you understand the implementation behind unit test frameworks, or are you a dumb consumer? – Architectural skills
  • How was the implementation explained? – Communication skills

What are your favourite questions?

** Replace xUnit with language specific implementation (JUnit, NUnit, etc.).