Multiplying in Python: A Beginner’s Guide


Python is a versatile programming language that can be used for a variety of tasks, including mathematical computations. One of the most basic mathematical operations in Python is multiplication. In this guide, we will explore the basics of multiplying in Python and provide examples to help beginners understand how it works.

Understanding Multiplication in Python

In Python, multiplication is a basic arithmetic operation that is used to calculate the product of two or more numbers. The multiplication operator in Python is represented by the asterisk symbol (*). Let’s take a look at how multiplication works in Python.

Multiplying Integers:
When we multiply two integers in Python, the result is also an integer. For example, if we multiply 3 and 4, the result will be 12.

a = 3
b = 4
c = a * b
print(c) # Output: 12

Multiplying Floats:
When we multiply two floating-point numbers in Python, the result is also a float. For example, if we multiply 2.5 and 3.2, the result will be 8.0.

a = 2.5
b = 3.2
c = a * b
print(c) # Output: 8.0

Multiplying Negative Numbers:
When we multiply a positive number with a negative number in Python, we get a negative result. For example, if we multiply -2 and 3, the result will be -6.

a = -2
b = 3
c = a * b
print(c) # Output: -6

Order of Operations in Multiplication:
In Python, as well as in mathematics, multiplication follows the order of operations. This means that multiplication is performed before addition or subtraction. For example:

a = 4 + 5 * 3
print(a) # Output: 19

b = (4 + 5) * 3
print(b) # Output: 27

In the first example, multiplication is performed before addition, so the result is 15 + 4 = 19. In the second example, the parentheses are used to force addition to be performed before multiplication, so the result is (4 + 5) * 3 = 27.

In conclusion, understanding how multiplication works in Python is a fundamental skill for any programmer. With this knowledge, you can perform basic arithmetic operations and more complex calculations in your code.

Examples of Multiplication in Python

Multiplication is an essential arithmetic operation in Python that is used to calculate the product of two or more numbers. In this section, we will explore some examples of multiplication in Python.

Example 1: Multiplying Two Integers
The simplest example of multiplication involves multiplying two integers. For instance, if we want to find the product of 5 and 6, we can use the following code:

result = 5 * 6



Here, the `*` symbol is used to multiply the two integers 5 and 6, and the result is stored in the variable `result`. The `print()` function is used to display the output on the console.

Example 2: Multiplying a Float and an Integer
Multiplication in Python can also be performed between a float and an integer. Let’s say we want to calculate the area of a square with side length 4.5 units. We can use the following code:

side = 4.5
area = side * side



Here, we have multiplied a float value (`side`) with itself to get the area of the square.

Example 3: Multiplying Negative Numbers
Multiplying negative numbers follows the same rules as multiplying positive numbers. For example, if we multiply -2 with -3, we get:

result = -2 * -3



In this case, both operands are negative, so their product is positive.

Example 4: Using Parentheses to Change Order of Operations
In Python, like in mathematics, parentheses can be used to change the order of operations when performing multiplication. For example, consider:

result = 10 + 2 * 5



Here, the multiplication operation is performed before the addition, following the rules of operator precedence. However, if we want to perform the addition first, we can use parentheses:

result = (10 + 2) * 5



Here, the parentheses indicate that the addition should be done first before multiplying by 5.


In conclusion, multiplying in Python is a fundamental concept that every beginner needs to understand. We have seen how to use the multiplication operator (*) in Python to multiply two or more numbers, and how to store the result of the multiplication operation in a variable.

We have also discussed some common errors that beginners may encounter when multiplying in Python, such as using the wrong data types or forgetting to use the multiplication operator.

Overall, multiplying in Python is a simple and straightforward process that can be easily mastered with practice. As you continue to learn more about Python programming, you will encounter more complex mathematical operations that build on the concepts we have covered in this guide.
Interested in learning more? Check out our Introduction to Python course!

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