By Dillion Megida

To square a number, you multiply that number by itself. And there are multiple ways to do this in Python.

You can directly multiple a number by itself (**number * number**) but in this article, I'll show you three ways you can do this without hardcoding both numbers.

The three ways are:

- **, the power operator
- the in-built
`pow()`

function - the
`math.pow()`

function from the`math`

module

## How to Use the Power Operator (**) in Python

`**`

is called the power operator. You use it to raise a number to a specified power. Here is the syntax:

```
number ** exponent
```

The expression above is evaluated as **number * number...** (for as many times as the value of the exponent). You can also read the expression as **5 ^{2}**.

Using this operator, you can find the square of a number using **2** as the exponent. For example, to find the square of 5, you can do this:

```
square = 5 ** 2
print(square)
# 25
```

The power operator evaluates the expression as **5 * 5**, which results in 25.

## How to Use the `pow()`

Function in Python

Python has an inbuilt `pow()`

function, which evaluates a number to the power of another number. Here's the syntax:

```
pow(base, exponent)
// interpreted as ^3
```

The code above is interpreted as base^{exponent}.

The function accepts two arguments: the number to be raised (known as the **base**) and the power the number should be raised to (the **exponent**).

To find the square of a number using this function, the number will be the base, and the exponent will be **2**, which means number^{2}.

To find the square of **5**, for example, you can use this function like this:

```
square = pow(5, 2)
print(square)
# 25
```

The `pow()`

function also receives a third argument: the **modulo**. The sign for modulo is **%**. This argument evaluates the remainder when a value is divided by another.

For example, **5 % 2** gives **1** because 5 divided by 2 is 2, remainder 1.

Applying the modulo the `pow()`

function looks like this:

```
mod = pow(5, 2, 3)
print(mod)
## 1
## 5 * 5 is 25
## 25 % 3 is 1
```

According to the python documentation on pow, this approach computes more efficiently than `pow(5,2) % 3`

## How to USe the math.pow() Function in Python

`math.pow()`

comes from Python's `math`

module. This function is similar to the in-built `pow()`

function in usage and syntax, except that it has two differences:

- it only accepts two arguments: the
**base**and the**exponent** - it always returns a float number even when the raised number is a whole number.

So, `math.pow(5, 2)`

returns **25.0**.

`pow()`

will only return a float number when the number is a float. It will return an integer if the number is whole. But `math.pow()`

always returns a float number.

Now you know how to square numbers in Python! Thank you for reading.