What is lapply in r?

What is lapply in r?

What is lapply in r?

This recipe explains what is lapply in r


Recipe Objective

Problem: Iteration through a long list or vector using a for loop takes tremendous amount of time.

This problem is solved by using apply family of functions in R. This family of functions can be fed with many built-in functions to perform different tasks on the collection of objects such as list, vector, dataframe etc.

The family of apply functions are listed below:

  1. apply()
  2. lapply()
  3. sapply()
  4. tapply()

lapply() is a function that takes a vector,list or data frame as input and gives the output as list by appplying a certain operation on it.

This recipe demonstrates how to use the lapply() using a list as input

Step 1: Importing libraries and loading dataset

We create a list and a vector of multiples of 4

vector_ = c(4,8,12,16,20,25)

Step 2: Using lapply()

Using the lapply() wuth the following syntax:

lapply(X, FUN)


  1. X = list or vector ;
  2. FUN = function that needs to be applied on every element of list or vector
# squaring the elements in a vector_ using a user defined function result = lapply(vector_, FUN = function(i) i^2) result ​


NOTE: You can see the that the output of both is a list

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