PHP Arrays Tutorial and PHP Array Examples

An array in PHP is actually an ordered map. A map is a type that maps values to keys. This type is optimized in several ways, so you can use it as a real array, or a list (vector), hashtable (which is an implementation of a map), dictionary, collection, stack, queue and probably more. Because you can have another PHP array as a value, you can also quite easily simulate trees.

PHP Array Syntax: Create an Array
language-construct array() is used to create an array in PHP. See example below

array( [key =>] value
  , …
key: key may be an integer or string
value: A value can be of any PHP type

$arr = array(“foo” => “bar”, 12 => true);
echo $arr[“foo”]; this will print bar
echo $arr[12]; this will print 1

if you provide the brackets with no key specified, then the maximum of the existing integer indices +1 is taken as key. see below

$arr = array(5 => 1, 12 => 2); This will create an array with 2 elements
$arr[] = 56;     new key will be maximum key + 1 i.e $arr[13] = 56
$arr[“x”] = 42;  This adds a new element to the array with key “x”

array(5 => 43, 32, 56, “b” => 12); This array is the same as following.
array(5 => 43, 6 => 32, 7 => 56, “b” => 12);

Handling arrays from html form inputs to php scripts
Following example will show we can use an array from html form inputs.

HTML form with array
<input type=”checkbox” name=”selected_ids[]” value=”1″>
<input type=”checkbox” name=”selected_ids[]” value=”2″>
<input type=”checkbox” name=”selected_ids[]” value=”3″>
<input type=”checkbox” name=”selected_ids[]” value=”11″>
<input type=”checkbox” name=”selected_ids[]” value=”12″>
<input type=”checkbox” name=”selected_ids[]” value=”13″>

When we submit above form, it will generate $_POST[‘selected_ids’][] array to the form handling php script. This array holds all selected checkbox values from above html form. foreach() construct can be used to extract values from the array. Following code example will show how we can extract those values from the returning array.

foreach ($_POST[‘selected_ids’] as $key => $value) {
    echo “Key: $key; Value: $value<br>”;
for example if 1,2 and 12 is selected from the above html form then above code will print
Key: 0 Value: 1
Key: 1 Value: 2
Key: 2 Value: 12


35 Responses to PHP Arrays Tutorial and PHP Array Examples

  1. someguy says:

    Just wanted to say thanks for this tutorial. Been beating my head against the wall with arrays. Have read a number of other tutorials. I don’t know what it is about yours but after reading it I was able to accomplish what I needed. Thanks!

  2. Mohammad Arif Hossen says:


  3. oni-kun says:

    Thanks alot, I was wondering about setting arrays with form data.. This was better than other tutorials.

  4. kriszelle says:


  5. jobvacancies says:

    thank you for the information,
    This was helped,
    spirit! ! ! ! !

  6. Thiagarajan says:

    I am trying to pass an array to a checkbox post variable. While retriving the content of the array I am getting warning invalid argument. The code is below. could any one help??


    print “”;

    foreach($t as $v)
    for($i=0; $i< count($v); $i++)
    echo $v[$i];






    product = trim($tempproduct);
    $this->qty = trim($tempqty);

    echo $this->product;
    echo $this->qty;

    public function getstring()

    foreach($this->product as $v)
    print $v;



  7. aaaaaaa says:

    tryrtyrtb dfgd dfgdfg dg

  8. PtF says:

    Thx for the tutorial. I’m making my own website and I have a doubt how can I add this search stuff that appears here in the top right corner?

  9. tania says:

    This is a nice article..
    Its very easy to understand ..
    And this article is using to learn something about it..

    c#,, php tutorial, Ms sql server

    Thanks a lot..!

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    nothing good

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  18. tushar mondal says:

    two associative array merge if key are same then value are add and print the array. how is possible?

  19. mikan says:

    guys, I have this code.
    if(is_numeric ($string[$x])){

    what is the use of ($string[$x])?? Thanks a lot.

  20. anupal says:

    am getting error
    Notice: Undefined index: name
    name is the field name as name[]
    i want to fetch array form data but getting this error
    please help

  21. Mathias says:

    vielen dank aus germany

  22. You’r text helped me a lot, thank you for that, gonna save it, bookmarking that page at the moment!

  23. ranacseruet says:

    Great basics covering for php arrays. For the functinal references. I was wondering if you could add some details on multi-dimensional array as well. That should make this basics tutorial more rich. Besides, I will like to add some most frequently used php array functions reference which will be helpful to readers as next refernece, I guess. Thanks.

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