A method based on an interactive solution of the Boltzmann equation is presented for the calculation of the warm electron coefficient beta in polar semiconductors. The effect of electron-electron collisions is incorporated by using a Maxwellian energy distribution function for the carriers. With the aid of the method the warm-electron coefficients in InAs, InSb, InP and Hg 0.8Cd0.2Te are computed taking account of all the relevant scattering mechanisms. The effects of band nonparabolicity, p-function admixture and electron screening are included in the calculations. The sensitivity of beta on the choice of the scattering parameters is studied and the available experimental data are analysed in the light of the calculated values. Agreement between theory and experiment is found to be satisfactory in the case of InAs only.