Which Are the Types of Non-Primitive Data Structure?


Heather Bennett

Non-primitive data structures are essential in programming, as they allow for the storage and organization of complex data. Unlike primitive data types like integers or characters, non-primitive data structures are more advanced and can hold multiple values of different types. In this article, we will explore some of the most commonly used types of non-primitive data structures.


An array is a collection of elements of the same type. It can store a fixed number of elements and provides random access to its elements using an index.

Arrays are widely used because of their simplicity and efficiency. To declare an array in most programming languages, you need to specify the type of elements it will hold and the size of the array.

Linked Lists

A linked list is a data structure that consists of nodes connected together via pointers or links. Each node contains a value and a reference to the next node in the list.

Unlike arrays, linked lists allow for dynamic memory allocation, making them more flexible in terms of size. However, accessing elements in a linked list is slower compared to arrays due to the need to traverse through the list.


A stack is a Last-In-First-Out (LIFO) data structure that allows for efficient insertion and removal of elements from one end called the top. It follows the principle of “last item in, first item out.”

The two primary operations performed on a stack are push (inserting an element at the top) and pop (removing an element from the top). Stacks are commonly used in applications that require backtracking or undo functionality.


A queue is a First-In-First-Out (FIFO) data structure that operates on two ends: front and rear. Elements are inserted at the rear end and removed from the front end.

The two primary operations performed on a queue are enqueue (inserting an element at the rear) and dequeue (removing an element from the front). Queues are commonly used in scenarios that involve handling tasks in the order they were received, such as scheduling processes.


A tree is a hierarchical data structure that consists of nodes connected by edges. It has a root node at the top, followed by child nodes, and leaf nodes at the bottom.

Trees are commonly used to represent hierarchical relationships between elements. Some common types of trees include binary trees, AVL trees, and B-trees.


A graph is a collection of nodes connected by edges. Unlike trees, graphs can have cycles and multiple connections between nodes.

They are used to represent complex relationships between elements. Graphs have various applications, such as social networks, transportation networks, and computer networks.

Hash Tables

A hash table is a data structure that provides efficient insertion, deletion, and retrieval operations. It uses a hash function to map keys to their corresponding values in an array-like structure called a hash table. Hash tables are ideal for scenarios where quick access to data based on keys is required.


Non-primitive data structures play a crucial role in programming as they provide efficient ways to organize and manipulate complex data. Understanding the different types of non-primitive data structures allows programmers to choose the most suitable one for their specific needs.

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