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Mastering Common Operators and Overloading in C++ Programming

Whether you’re a seasoned programmer or just starting out, understanding common operators in C++ is crucial for creating efficient and effective code. In this article, we will explore the types, precedence, and associativity of common operators in C++, as well as the definition and implementation of overloaded operators.

1) Common Operators in C++ Programming

Operators are symbols that allow for mathematical and logical operations to be performed on values or variables. In C++, there are several types of common operators that are used in programming.

Arithmetic Operators

Arithmetic operators perform basic mathematical operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The arithmetic operators in C++ are:

– Addition (+)

– Subtraction (-)

– Multiplication (*)

– Division (/)

– Modulus (%)

Logical Operators

Logical operators perform logical operations such as AND, OR and NOT. They are used for making decisions and branching based on conditions.

The logical operators in C++ are:

– Logical AND (&&)

– Logical OR (||)

– Logical NOT (!)

Comparison Operators

Comparison operators are used to compare two values or variables. They are used for decision making and branching in programming.

The comparison operators in C++ are:

– Equality (==)

– Inequality (!=)

– Greater than (>)

– Less than (<)

– Greater than or equal to (>=)

– Less than or equal to (<=)

Assignment Operators

Assignment operators are used to assign values to variables. The assignment operators in C++ are:

– Assignment (=)

– Addition assignment (+=)

– Subtraction assignment (-=)

– Multiplication assignment (*=)

– Division assignment (/=)

– Modulus assignment (%=)

Member Access Operators

Member access operators are used to access members of a class or structure. The member access operators in C++ are:

– Dot operator (.)

– Arrow operator (->)

Precedence and Associativity of Common Operators

The precedence of an operator determines the order in which operations are performed. Operators with higher precedence are evaluated first.

Parentheses can be used to alter the order of evaluation. The associativity of an operator determines the order in which operators with the same precedence are evaluated.

Operators with left associativity are evaluated from left to right. Operators with right associativity are evaluated from right to left.


Parentheses can be used to change the order of evaluation of operators. For example, in the expression 2 + 3 * 4, the multiplication is evaluated before the addition due to operator precedence.

However, by using parentheses, we can change the order of evaluation: (2 + 3) * 4.

Pointer Arithmetic

Pointer arithmetic uses operators such as + and – to perform arithmetic operations on pointers. This can be useful for manipulating arrays and strings.

For example, given an integer pointer p and an integer array arr:

p = arr; // Assign the pointer to the beginning of the array

p = p + 1; // Increment the pointer by one element

int x = *(p + 2); // Access the third element of the array using pointer arithmetic

2) Overloaded Operators in C++ Programming

Overloaded operators allow us to define alternative operations for user-defined objects, such as classes and structures. Overloading an operator allows us to perform a restricted set of modifications on our objects while still retaining their original functionality.

To overload an operator, we must define a function that takes the operator as its name. The function must have a return type and a parameter list.

The parameter list should include the operands that will be used with the operator.

For example, let’s consider a Person class with attributes name, age, and gender.

We could overload the + operator to add the age of two Person objects:

class Person {


string name;

int age;

char gender;

Person operator+(const Person& other) {

Person newPerson;

newPerson.age = age + other.age;

return newPerson;



In this example, we define a Person object using the + operator and create a new Person object with an age equal to the sum of the ages of the two original Person objects. The overloaded + operator provides a convenient way to perform the desired operation while still adhering to the class’s original definition.


Understanding common operators and their precedence is essential for writing efficient and effective code in C++. Overloading operators allows us to modify user-defined objects in a restricted manner while still maintaining their original functionality.

By using operators in C++, we can create code that is both efficient and intuitive, leading to faster, more reliable programming. In conclusion, understanding common operators such as arithmetic, logical, comparison, assignment, and member access in C++ programming, as well as their precedence and associativity, is crucial for efficient coding.

Overloading operators can be used to perform alternative operations on user-defined objects, while still adhering to the original class’s definition. The use of operators in C++ leads to faster, more reliable programming, making it a significant topic to comprehend for programmers of all levels.

Remember to implement operator precedence, associativity, and overloaded operators when programming in C++ for better efficiency.

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