What Is a Data Type Python?


Angela Bailey

A data type in Python defines the type of data that a variable can hold. It specifies the operations that can be performed on the variable and the storage method for the variable’s value.

Python is a dynamically typed language, which means that variables are not explicitly declared with a data type. Instead, the interpreter automatically assigns a data type based on the value assigned to the variable.

Common Data Types in Python

Python provides several built-in data types that are commonly used in programming:

Numeric Data Types

Python supports various numeric data types, including:

  • int: represents positive or negative whole numbers without any decimal points.
  • float: represents real numbers with decimal points.
  • complex: represents complex numbers with real and imaginary parts.

Sequence Data Types

Python provides several sequence data types, including:

  • str: represents a sequence of characters enclosed in single quotes (”) or double quotes (“”). Strings are immutable, which means they cannot be changed once created.
  • list: represents an ordered collection of items enclosed in square brackets ([]).

    Lists are mutable, allowing you to add, remove, or modify items after creation.

  • tuple: similar to lists but enclosed in parentheses (()). Tuples are immutable.
  • range: represents an immutable sequence of numbers generated by the range() function.

Mappings and Sets

In addition to sequences, Python also provides:

  • dict: represents a collection of key-value pairs enclosed in curly braces ({}). Each key-value pair maps the key to its associated value.

    Dictionaries are mutable.

  • set: represents an unordered collection of unique items enclosed in curly braces ({}). Sets are mutable and do not allow duplicate values.

Determining the Data Type of a Variable

You can use the type() function to determine the data type of a variable. Let’s look at an example:

x = 5
y = “Hello”
z = [1, 2, 3]

print(type(x)) # Output:
print(type(y)) # Output:
print(type(z)) # Output:


In Python, data types play a crucial role in determining how variables behave and what operations can be performed on them. Understanding the different data types available and their characteristics is essential for writing efficient and bug-free code. By leveraging the appropriate data types, you can effectively manipulate and process data in your Python programs.

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