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Understanding When to Use ‘Self’ in Python – A Comprehensive Guide

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th?q=When Do You Use 'Self' In Python? [Duplicate] - Understanding When to Use 'Self' in Python - A Comprehensive Guide

Python is a versatile programming language that has become increasingly popular in recent years. When it comes to writing code, it’s essential to use the right syntax and keywords to ensure that your program runs smoothly. One such keyword that often confuses beginners is ‘self.’ In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explain what ‘self’ is and when you should use it in Python.

Have you ever been stuck trying to figure out why your Python code isn’t working as expected? It could very well be because you didn’t use ‘self’ correctly. Understanding when to use ‘self’ can save you hours of frustration when debugging your programs.

Whether you’re a seasoned developer or new to Python, this guide is for you. We’ll walk you through the basics of object-oriented programming, explain why ‘self’ is important, and provide plenty of examples to help you solidify your understanding.

By the end of this guide, you’ll have a firm grasp on when to use ‘self’ in Python, and you’ll be writing better, more efficient code. So, sit back, relax, and let’s dive into the world of ‘self’ in Python!

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“When Do You Use ‘Self’ In Python? [Duplicate]” ~ bbaz

Comparison Between Using and Not Using ‘Self’ in Python


Python is an object-oriented language that uses classes to define objects. When defining methods within these classes, the ‘self’ parameter is often used. This article provides a comprehensive guide on understanding when to use self in Python.

Using Self vs Not Using Self

When defining methods within a class, it’s common to see two different approaches: using the ‘self’ parameter or not using it. The difference between these two approaches is significant as it affects how we access variables within the method.

The Purpose of Self

The purpose of ‘self’ is to represent the instance of the object that the method is being called on. It’s used to access variables and methods within the object, allowing us to modify the object’s state.

When to Use Self

Self should be used when accessing instance variables within a method. It’s also required when calling other methods within the same class.

When Not to Use Self

In general, you should avoid not using ‘self’ unless you have a good reason to do so. However, there are some instances where not using it is acceptable, such as defining a class method.

Sample Code Without Self

Consider this sample code:“`class Car: def __init__(make, model): make = make model = model def get_make(): return make def get_model(): return model“`This code won’t work as expected because we’re trying to access make and model without proper class variable scoping. We need to add ‘self’ as a parameter to each method.

Sample Code with Self

Consider the revised sample code:“`class Car: def __init__(self, make, model): self.make = make self.model = model def get_make(self): return self.make def get_model(self): return self.model“`This revised code works because we added ‘self’ as a parameter to each method, allowing us to correctly access the instance variables.

Benefits of Using Self

The benefits of using ‘self’ in Python are numerous. It helps keep code organized and easy to read, reduces the likelihood of errors caused by variable scoping issues, and promotes better code reuse.

Drawbacks of Not Using Self

If you don’t use ‘self’ in your code, it can lead to confusion as to where variables are defined and how they are being accessed. It also makes it difficult to reuse code.


In conclusion, using ‘self’ in Python is essential when defining methods within a class. It allows us to access instance variables and methods within the object, modify the object’s state, and promotes better code organization. Not using ‘self’ is generally discouraged except in specific cases where it’s not needed. By understanding when to use ‘self’ in Python, you’ll be able to write cleaner, more organized, and more maintainable code.

Using Self Not Using Self
Allows access to instance variables and methods within an object Makes it difficult to know where variables are defined or where they are being accessed
Promotes better code organization and code reuse Can lead to confusion and potentially cause errors when accessing variables
Reduces the likelihood of errors caused by variable scoping issues

Overall, using ‘self’ in Python is a best practice that every Python developer should follow. By adhering to consistent coding standards, your code will be easier to read, maintain, and scale.

Thank you for taking the time to read this comprehensive guide on when to use ‘self’ in Python. We hope that this article has given you a clear understanding of why and how to use this important concept in your programming projects.

Remember, ‘self’ is an essential tool for creating classes and objects that can interact with one another. By understanding when and how to use ‘self’, you can write more efficient and effective code, saving yourself time and effort in the long run.

If you have any questions or feedback about this article, we would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment below or contact us directly. And as always, keep learning and exploring new ways to improve your Python skills!

People also ask about Understanding When to Use ‘Self’ in Python – A Comprehensive Guide:

  1. What is ‘self’ in Python?
  2. ‘Self’ in Python refers to the instance of a class.

  3. When should you use ‘self’ in Python?
  4. ‘Self’ should be used when you want to access variables or methods of a particular instance of a class.

  5. What happens if you don’t use ‘self’ in Python?
  6. If you don’t use ‘self’ in Python, you won’t be able to access instance variables or methods within a class.

  7. Can you use something other than ‘self’ in Python?
  8. You can use any variable name instead of ‘self’ in Python, but it is convention to use ‘self’ for readability purposes.

  9. Are there any exceptions to using ‘self’ in Python?
  10. Yes, there are certain scenarios where ‘self’ may not be necessary, such as when defining static methods or class methods.