Exploring Inheritance & Polymorphism in OOP

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In the previous post, we covered the basics of Object-Oriented Programming (OOP) and dove into abstraction and encapsulation. Now, let’s explore the remaining two key concepts of OOP: inheritance and polymorphism.

Understanding Inheritance

What is Inheritance?

Inheritance allows a class to inherit attributes and methods from another class. This promotes code reusability and establishes a natural hierarchy between classes. The class that inherits is called the subclass (or derived class), and the class being inherited from is the superclass (or base class).

How to Use Inheritance

Inheritance makes it easy to create new classes based on existing ones.


class Vehicle:
def __init__(self, make, model):
self.make = make
self.model = model

def start_engine(self):
print(Engine started)

class Car(Vehicle):
def __init__(self, make, model, num_doors):
super().__init__(make, model)
self.num_doors = num_doors

def open_trunk(self):
print(Trunk opened)

Car inherits from Vehicle, adding its own properties and methods.

Case Study: Creating a Vehicle Hierarchy

Imagine you are designing a system for different types of vehicles. By using inheritance, you create a base Vehicle class and extend it to specific types like Car, Bike, etc. This reduces redundancy and keeps the code organized.

How It Helps

This case study demonstrates how inheritance allows for code reuse and organization. It shows the efficiency of building on existing structures to handle more specific scenarios.

Understanding Polymorphism

What is Polymorphism?

Polymorphism allows objects of different classes to be treated as objects of a common superclass. This means you can use a unified interface to work with different data types. Polymorphism is achieved through method overriding and method overloading.

How to Use Polymorphism


class Animal:
def make_sound(self):

class Dog(Animal):
def make_sound(self):
return Bark

class Cat(Animal):
def make_sound(self):
return Meow

def make_animal_sound(animal):

dog = Dog()
cat = Cat()
make_animal_sound(dog) # Outputs: Bark
make_animal_sound(cat) # Outputs: Meow

Here, make_animal_sound can accept any Animal object, demonstrating polymorphism.

Case Study: Handling Different Animals

Consider a program that needs to handle different animal sounds. By using polymorphism, you can create a general method to make animal sounds without worrying about the specific type of animal. This makes the code flexible and easy to extend.

How It Helps

This case study highlights the flexibility and power of polymorphism. It shows how you can write more generic and adaptable code, accommodating future changes and additions with ease.


Object-Oriented Programming (OOP) is a powerful paradigm that simplifies complex software development. In this two-part series, we explored the four key concepts of OOP: Abstraction, Encapsulation, Inheritance, and Polymorphism. By understanding and applying these principles, you can create code that is more organized, reusable, and easier to maintain.

We hope this series has provided a clear and practical introduction to OOP. Stay tuned for more in-depth articles on advanced topics in OOP and other programming concepts to further enhance your coding skills.

Happy coding!