How to Use Colon (:) in List in Python (2 Examples)
Here you have an overview of the tutorial:
Let’s dive right into the code!
Creation of Example Data
The first step in this tutorial will be to create a Python list to use as an example. Take a look at the code below.
my_list = [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] print(my_list) # [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]
As you can see,
my_list is a list containing five integers. Let’s see how the colon operator can be useful in working with lists!
Example 1: Use Colon for Slicing or Extended Slicing
Slicing is a widely used method for extracting a portion of a list. The colon operator allows us to create a new list that contains a subset of elements from the original list.
sliced_list = my_list[1:4] print(sliced_list) # [2, 3, 4]
As shown in the example, the colon operator selected the elements from index 1 to index 4 (not including) in
my_list, resulting in a new
The colon operator can also be combined with additional parameters to control the step size of the slice as follows.
sliced_list = my_list[1:4:2] print(sliced_list) # [2, 4]
my_list[1:4:2] selected elements starting from index 1 up to (but not including) index 4, with a step size of 2. The resulting sliced list contains every second element.
Example 2: Use Colon for Iteration
The colon operator can also be used together with a for loop to iterate over a range of indices or elements in a list.
for item in my_list[2:]: print(item) # 3 # 4 # 5
This code has iterated over the elements of
my_list starting from index 2 and printed each element from that point onwards.
Video, Further Resources & Summary
Do you need more explanations on how to use a colon in a list in Python? Then you should have a look at the following YouTube video of the Statistics Globe YouTube channel.
The YouTube video will be added soon.
Furthermore, you could have a look at some of the related tutorials on Statistics Globe:
- Using Lists in Python (Introduction)
- Append to Empty List in Python
- Find Similar Strings in List in Python
- Find Substring within List of Strings in Python
- Find Index of All Matching Elements in List in Python
This post has shown how to use the colon operator in a list in Python. In case you have further questions, don’t hesitate to let me know in the comments section below.
This page was created in collaboration with Paula Villasante Soriano. Please have a look at Paula’s author page to get more information about her academic background and the other articles she has written for Statistics Globe.
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