What Is Struct in Data Structure?


Larry Thompson

In the world of data structures, one term that you may frequently come across is “struct”. A struct, short for structure, is a user-defined composite data type in most programming languages. It allows you to group together related data items of different types into a single unit.

Defining a Struct

To define a struct, you first need to specify its name and then list the member variables inside curly braces. Each member variable has its own data type and a unique name.

Let’s take an example of a struct called “Person” which represents information about an individual:

struct Person {
  char name[50];
  int age;
  float height;

In this example, we have defined a Person struct with three member variables: “name” of type character array (string), “age” of type integer, and “height” of type float.

Creating Struct Instances

Once you have defined a struct, you can create instances or objects of that struct. Each instance will have its own set of values for the member variables.

To create an instance of the Person struct and assign values to its member variables, you can use the following syntax:

struct Person person1;
strcpy(person1.name, "John");
person1.age = 25;
person1.height = 5.9;

In this example, we create an instance called “person1” and assign values to its member variables using the dot (.) operator.

Accessing Struct Members

You can access the values stored in the member variables of a struct using dot (.) operator followed by the variable name. For example:

printf("Name: %s\n", person1.name);
printf("Age: %d\n", person1.age);
printf("Height: %.2f\n", person1.height);

This code will print the values stored in the member variables of the “person1” instance.

Benefits of Using Structs

Structs provide a way to organize related data items into a single unit, making it easier to manage and manipulate data. Some benefits of using structs are:

  • Modularity: Structs allow you to encapsulate data and related functions together, promoting modular programming.
  • Data Organization: Structs help in organizing complex data structures by grouping related data items.
  • Data Sharing: Structs facilitate the sharing of multiple values between different parts of a program.
  • Ease of Use: Structs make it easier to pass and return multiple values as function parameters or return types.


In summary, a struct is a user-defined composite data type that allows you to group together related data items. It provides a way to organize, access, and manipulate data more effectively. By leveraging the power of structs, you can enhance the modularity and organization of your programs.

So next time you encounter a complex set of related data, consider using a struct to simplify your code and improve its readability!

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