3 Ways to Use Array Slice in JavaScript

The slice method of array returns a shallow copy of a portion of the array based on the start and end index passed. Learn three different ways to use array slice in JavaScript.

Written by K. Jagathish
Published on Feb. 07, 2023
3 Ways to Use Array Slice in JavaScript
Image: Shutterstock / Built In
Brand Studio Logo

The slice method in an array returns a shallow copy of a portion of the array based on the start and end index passed.

3 Uses for Array Slice in JavaScript

  1. Copy an array.
  2. Get the first N array.
  3. Remove an element at a specific index.

Here’s a brief refresher on the slice method: 

  • Both start and end is an optional argument.
  • By default the start is 0 and end is array.length
  • end of an index is not considered. This means if you slice an array passing start as 0 and end as 5, then elements from 0th to 4th index will be copied.
  • The slice doesn’t affect the source array from which we are performing slice.
  • It only creates a shallow copy.
  • We can also give a negative value for the start and end index, which indicates an offset from the end of the array. So, we can have a -1 point to last element.
var numbers = [0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5];
var newNumbers = numbers.slice(1,4);
newNumbers;   //[1,2,3]

 

How to Use Array Slice in JavaScript

Below are some common ways you can use the array slice method in JavaScript.

 

1. Use Array Slice to Copy an Array

var numbers = [0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5];
var copiedNumbers = numbers.slice(0, numbers.length);
copiedNumbers; // [0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5]

By default, the start index is 0 and the end index is the length of the array. By applying that, we see:

var numbers = [0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5];
var copiedNumbers = numbers.slice();
copiedNumbers; // [0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5]

More on JavaScript: What Are JavaScript Algorithms and Data Structures?

 

2. Use Array Slice to Get the First N Array

This is similar to copying an array. Instead of passing the end index value as arrayLength, pass end index as n.

function firstNItems(n, numbers =[] ) {
   if(n >= 0) {
      return numbers.slice(0, n);
   }
   return [];
}
firstNItems(0, [1,2,3]); // []
firstNItems(2, [1,2,3]); // [1,2]
A tutorial on the array slice method in JavaScript. | Video: Florin Pop

More on JavaScript: 5 Ways to check If an Object Is Empty in JavaScript

 

3. Use Array Slice to Remove an Element at a Specific Index

Using the shift and pop method, you can remove an element at the front and end of the array respectively. But there is no method to remove an element at a specific index. For that, you can use the slice method.

This will allow you to do the following:

  • Create an array that contains all elements of the array before the index.
  • Create an array that contains all elements of the array after the index.
  • Join two arrays.
function removeElementAt(arr, index) {
   let frontPart = arr.slice(0, index);
   let lastPart  = arr.slice( index+1 ); // index to end of array
   return [...frontPart, ...lastPart];
}
let numbers = [1,2,3,4,5];
removeElementAt(numbers, 2); [1,2,4,5];
Hiring Now
Discover
Cloud • Fintech • Machine Learning • Analytics • Financial Services
SHARE