What Are Various Scripting Elements of JSP?


Heather Bennett

JSP, or JavaServer Pages, is a powerful technology that allows developers to create dynamic web pages by embedding Java code within HTML. To make the most of JSP, it’s important to understand and utilize various scripting elements that it offers.


Scriptlets are the most basic scripting elements in JSP. They allow you to insert Java code directly into your JSP page.

To include a scriptlet, you use the <% %> tags. Here’s an example:

   int num1 = 10;
   int num2 = 20;
   int sum = num1 + num2;

In this example, we declare two variables, num1 and num2, and calculate their sum in the <% %> tags.


JSP expressions are used to evaluate values and insert them directly into your HTML code. The syntax for expressions is ${expression}. Here’s an example:

The sum of ${num1} and ${num2} is ${sum}.

In this example, the values of num1, num2, and sum from the previous scriptlet are displayed using expressions.


JSP declarations are used to define variables or methods outside of any method or tag. They can be accessed throughout the JSP page.

The syntax for declarations is <%! %>. Here’s an example:

   int num3 = 30;
   public void displayMessage() {
      System.out.println("Hello, JSP!");

In this example, we declare a variable num3 and a method displayMessage(), which can be used anywhere in the JSP page.


JSP directives are used to provide instructions to the JSP container. They are typically used to import classes, define error pages, or set content type. There are three types of directives: page, taglib, and include.

Page Directive:

The page directive is used to define various attributes for the JSP page. Here’s an example:

<%@ page language="java" contentType="text/html" %>

In this example, we set the language of the JSP page as Java and the content type as HTML.

Taglib Directive:

The taglib directive is used to define custom tag libraries that can be used in your JSP page. Here’s an example:

<%@ taglib uri="http://example.com/mytags" prefix="mytag" %>

In this example, we define a custom tag library with the URI “http://example.com/mytags” and the prefix “mytag”. This allows us to use custom tags defined in that library.

Include Directive:

The include directive is used to include another file into your JSP page. Here’s an example:

<%@ include file="header.jsp" %>

In this example, we include the file “header.jsp” into our current JSP page. This can be useful for reusing common sections of code.


By utilizing these various scripting elements, you can unlock the full potential of JSP and create dynamic and interactive web pages. Scriptlets, expressions, declarations, and directives provide you with the flexibility to incorporate Java code seamlessly into your HTML, making your web development experience more efficient and effective.

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