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Inheritance or Superclass - Subclass Concept

Posted By: Abelardo Fischer     Category: Java     Views: 101501

This article explains about Superclass and Subclass concept or inheritance in java with examples.

Inheritance allows one class to reuse the functionality provided by its superclasses. The extends clause in a class declaration establishes an inheritance relationship between two classes.

Note that A class may directly extend only one superclass. Each of those subclasses may itself have several subclasses.

Syntax of class to Inherit (Inheritance)

class clsName2 extends clsName1
      // class body

clsName2 is subclass of clsName1 or clsName1 is a superclass of clsName2. 

There is an important feature of java that relates to class hierarchies and reference variables. To declare a variable that references an object is as below.

Syntax of Variable declaration 

clsName varName;

varName is a name of the variable and clsName is a name of its class. So, varName can reference any object of class clsName. Also note that varName can also reference any object whose class is a subclass of clsName. 

For example,

There is a superclass "Person" have having subclasses "Employee" and "Teacher".   "Employee" class have subclasses "Permanent Employee" and "Contract Employee".

As per above example Person class reference can hold of its sub classes i.e. Employee, teacher, Permanent Employee or Contract class object. 

Note that above feature is an important feature of java to implement run-time polymorphism.


Example of Inheritance or Superclass - Subclass Concept

Example : Program that illustrates inheritance in java using person class

class Person
     String FirstName;
     String LastName;
     Person(String fName, String lName)
              FirstName = fName;
              LastName = lName;

      void Display()
            System.out.println("First Name : " + FirstName);
            System.out.println("Last Name : " + LastName);

class Student extends Person
     int id;
     String standard;
     String instructor;
     Student(String fName, String lName, int nId, String stnd, String instr)
          id = nId;
          standard = stnd;
          instructor = instr;         
     void Display()

            System.out.println("ID : " + id);
            System.out.println("Standard : " + standard);
            System.out.println("Instructor : " + instructor);

class Teacher extends Person
      String mainSubject;
      int salary;
      String type; // Primary or Secondary School teacher
     Teacher(String fName, String lName, String sub, int slry, String sType)
          mainSubject = sub;
          salary = slry;
          type = sType;         
     void Display()

            System.out.println("Main Subject : " + mainSubject);
            System.out.println("Salary : " + salary);
            System.out.println("Type : " + type);

class InheritanceDemo
       public static void main(String args[])
               Person pObj = new Person("Rayan","Miller");
               Student sObj = new Student("Jacob","Smith",1,"1 - B","Roma");
               Teacher tObj = new Teacher("Daniel","Martin","English","6000","Primary Teacher");
               System.out.println("Person :");
               System.out.println("Student :");
               System.out.println("Teacher :");

Person :
First Name : Rayan       
Last Name : Miller
Student :
First Name : Jacob
Last Name : Smith
ID : 1
Standard : 1 - B
Instructor : Roma
Teacher :
First Name : Daniel
Last Name : Martin
Main Subject : English
Salary : 6000
Type : Primary Teacher

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Abelardo Fischer
Abelardo Fischer author of Inheritance or Superclass - Subclass Concept is from Frankfurt, Germany.
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Emanul Sk from India Comment on: Sep 26
Very simple code cleared my concept. Thanks.
But there's an error,
Teacher tObj = new Teacher("Daniel","Martin","English","6000","Primary Teacher");
6000 is of int datatype.

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