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Constructor vs. Method: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Published on February 6, 2024
A constructor is a special method in object-oriented programming used to initialize a new object, whereas a method is a block of code within a class that defines an object's behavior.
Constructor vs. Method

Key Differences

Constructors are special methods in object-oriented programming used to create and initialize an object when it is instantiated. Methods, on the other hand, are regular functions defined within a class that describe the behaviors of an object.
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A constructor typically has the same name as its class and does not have a return type. Methods are named blocks of code that can perform tasks and optionally return a value, and they have their own names distinct from the class name.
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Constructors are automatically called upon the creation of an object. Methods must be explicitly called to perform their designated function.
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In many programming languages, constructors can be overloaded to allow different ways of initializing an object. Methods can also be overloaded or overridden to provide different implementations.
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The primary purpose of a constructor is to set initial values for object attributes. Methods are used to define various actions that an object can perform or calculations it can execute.
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Comparison Chart

Purpose

Initializes a new object instance
Defines an object's behavior
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Naming

Same as the class, no return type
Different from the class, may return value
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Call Timing

Automatically on object instantiation
Explicitly by object or class
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Overloading

Can be overloaded for different initializations
Can be overloaded or overridden
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Primary Function

Sets initial state of object attributes
Performs actions or calculations
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Constructor and Method Definitions

Constructor

A special method to initialize new instances of a class.
The constructor for the 'Car' class sets the initial model and color.
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Method

Can return a value or perform an action.
This 'updateProfile' method updates the user's information.
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Constructor

A block of code invoked when an object is created.
In the 'User' class, the constructor assigns the username and password.
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Method

Operates on the data contained in an object.
The 'move' method changes the position of the graphic object.
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Constructor

A method that does not return a value.
The 'Rectangle' constructor initializes its length and breadth.
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Method

A block of code that performs a specific task.
I used the 'printDetails' method to display the object's information.
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Constructor

A unique method with the same name as its class.
He wrote a constructor for the 'Book' class to define its initial state.
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Method

Can be called on an object or statically from a class.
The 'findMax' method finds the maximum value in the list.
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Constructor

To form by assembling or combining parts; build.
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Method

A means or manner of procedure, especially a regular and systematic way of accomplishing something
A simple method for making a pie crust.
Mediation as a method of solving disputes. See Usage Note at methodology.
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Constructor

To create (an argument or a sentence, for example) by systematically arranging ideas or terms.
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Method

Orderly arrangement of parts or steps to accomplish an end
Random efforts that lack method.
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Constructor

(Mathematics) To draw (a geometric figure) that meets specific requirements.
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Method

The procedures and techniques characteristic of a particular discipline or field of knowledge
This field course gives an overview of archaeological method.
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Constructor

Something formed or constructed from parts.
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Method

Method A technique of acting in which the actor recalls emotions and reactions from past experience and uses them in identifying with and individualizing the character being portrayed.
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Constructor

A concept, model, or schematic idea
A theoretical construct of the atom.
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Method

A process by which a task is completed; a way of doing something (followed by the adposition of, to or for before the purpose of the process).
If one method doesn't work, you should ask a friend to help you.
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Constructor

A concrete image or idea
"[He] began to shift focus from the haunted constructs of terror in his early work" (Stephen Koch).
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Method

A technique for acting based on the ideas articulated by Konstantin Stanislavski and focusing on authentically experiencing the inner life of the character being portrayed.
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Constructor

A person who, or thing that, constructs.
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Method

(object-oriented) A subroutine or function belonging to a class or object.
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Constructor

(automotive) A company or individual who builds racing vehicles. In Formula One, constructor status is strictly defined by the rules, but in other motorsports the term is merely a descriptor. Depending on the racing rules, some constructors (e.g. Cosworth) may provide vehicles to racing teams who are not themselves constructors, while others are both teams and constructors (Ducati Corse, Scuderia Ferrari).
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Method

(slang) Marijuana.
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Constructor

(object-oriented programming) A class method that creates and initializes each instance of an object.
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Method

(dated) An instruction book systematically arranged.
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Constructor

A constructer.
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Method

Ellipsis of method air.
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Constructor

Someone who contracts for and supervises construction (as of a building)
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Method

(transitive) To apply a method to.
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Constructor

Used to set initial values of object attributes.
The constructor in this code initializes all the required fields.
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Method

To apply particular treatment methods to (a mold).
The company employs extensive use of 3D modelling combined with solidification simulation to ensure that critical castings are properly methoded.
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Method

An orderly procedure or process; regular manner of doing anything; hence, manner; way; mode; as, a method of teaching languages; a method of improving the mind.
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Method

Orderly arrangement, elucidation, development, or classification; clear and lucid exhibition; systematic arrangement peculiar to an individual.
Though this be madness, yet there's method in it.
All method is a rational progress, a progress toward an end.
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Method

Classification; a mode or system of classifying natural objects according to certain common characteristics; as, the method of Theophrastus; the method of Ray; the Linnæan method.
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Method

A technique used in acting in which the actor tries to identify with the individual personality of the specific character being portrayed, so as to provide a realistic rendering of the character's role. Also called the Method, method acting, the Stanislavsky Method or Stanislavsky System.
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Method

A way of doing something, especially a systematic way; implies an orderly logical arrangement (usually in steps)
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Method

A function defined within a class.
The 'calculateArea' method computes the area of the shape.
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Repeatedly Asked Queries

Can a constructor return a value?

No, constructors do not return values.
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Is a constructor mandatory in a class?

Not always; some languages provide a default constructor if none is specified.
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How often can a method be called?

A method can be called multiple times, whenever needed.
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Can methods exist outside of classes?

In object-oriented programming, methods are defined within classes.
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What does a method do?

A method defines the behavior of an object, performing specific actions or calculations.
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Do methods have to change an object's state?

No, some methods may just return information about the object without changing it.
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What is a constructor?

A constructor is a special method used to initialize new instances of a class.
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Can methods be static?

Yes, methods can be static, meaning they can be called without creating an object.
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Can constructors be private?

Yes, constructors can be private, typically in singleton patterns.
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Is a constructor called automatically?

Yes, a constructor is called automatically when an object is created.
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What happens if a constructor is not defined?

Most languages automatically provide a default constructor.
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Can a class have more than one constructor?

Yes, classes can have multiple constructors, known as constructor overloading.
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How does a constructor identify itself?

A constructor is identified by having the same name as the class.
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Are constructors inherited?

Constructors are not inherited in most programming languages.
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Can a method be overloaded?

Yes, methods can be overloaded with different parameters.
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Do constructors have parameters?

Constructors can have parameters to initialize object attributes.
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What's the difference in usage between a constructor and a method?

Constructors are used for initialization, while methods are used for operations on objects.
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Are methods required in a class?

While not mandatory, methods are essential for defining the behavior of a class.
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Can methods access private attributes of a class?

Yes, methods can access private attributes within the same class.
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What is method overriding?

Method overriding is redefining a method in a subclass that already exists in the parent class.
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Shumaila Saeed
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Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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