Python Pandas – Check if a pandas column exists

In this post we will be creating a Python script that will check if a pandas column exists within a data frame. To do this we will be using the ‘in’ operator which will find out whether a given value is a column heading within our data frame.

See below our data frame for this example, here we have three column headings which are ‘Rank’, ‘Name’ and ‘Platform’.

   Rank                       Name Platform
0     1                 Wii Sports      Wii
1     2          Super Mario Bros.      NES
2     3             Mario Kart Wii      Wii
3     4          Wii Sports Resort      Wii
4     5   Pokemon Red/Pokemon Blue       GB
5     6                     Tetris       GB
6     7      New Super Mario Bros.       DS
7     8                   Wii Play      Wii
8     9  New Super Mario Bros. Wii      Wii
9    10                  Duck Hunt      NES

To check if a column named ‘Rank’ exists within our pandas data frame we would use the snippet of code below.

import pandas as pd

if 'Rank' in df:
    print("Column Exists")

The above would return ‘Column Exists’ as output.

We can also change this to check whether a column does not exist within a data frame, see the snippet of code below as an example.

import pandas as pd

if 'Test' not in df:
    print("Column Does Not Exist")

The above would return ‘Column Does Not Exist” as output.

Take a look at some of our other content around the Python programming language here. Or check out our Pandas crash course by clicking here instead.

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