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Switch case in R

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Switch case statements are a substitute for long if statements that compare a variable to several integral values. Switch case in R is a multiway branch statement. It allows a variable to be tested for equality against a list of values.

Switch statement follows the approach of mapping and searching over a list of values. If there is more than one match for a specific value, then the switch statement will return the first match found of the value matched with the expression.


switch(expression, case1, case2, case3....)

Here, the expression is matched with the list of values and the corresponding value is returned.

Important Points about Switch Case Statements:

  • An expression type with character string always matched to the listed cases.
  • An expression which is not a character string then this exp is coerced to integer.
  • For multiple matches, the first match element will be used.
  • No default argument case is available there in R switch case.
  • An unnamed case can be used, if there is no matched case.


Example 1:

# Following is a simple R program  
# to demonstrate syntax of switch.
val <- switch(


[1] "Geeks4"

Example 2:

# Following is val1 simple R program  
# to demonstrate syntax of switch.
# Mathematical calculation
val1 = 6  
val2 = 7
val3 = "s"  
result = switch(  
    "a"= cat("Addition =", val1 + val2),  
    "d"= cat("Subtraction =", val1 - val2),  
    "r"= cat("Division = ", val1 / val2),  
    "s"= cat("Multiplication =", val1 * val2),
    "m"= cat("Modulus =", val1 %% val2),
    "p"= cat("Power =", val1 ^ val2)


multiplication = 42NULL

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Last Updated : 21 Apr, 2020
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