# Programming Fundamentals/Relational Operators

## Overview

A relational operator is a programming language construct or operator that tests or defines some kind of relation between two entities. These include numerical equality (e.g., 5 = 5) and inequalities (e.g., 4 ≥ 3).

## Discussion

Relational operators give a Boolean value (data type that has one of two possible values to represent the two truths of logic) by evaluating the relationship between two operands.

Operator symbols and/or names can vary with different programming languages. Most programming languages use relational operators similar to the following:

 Operator Meaning `<` less than `>` greater than `<=` less than or equal to `>=` greater than or equal to `==` equality (equal to) `!=` or `<>` inequality (not equal to)

Examples:

• 9 < 25
• 9 < 3
• 9 > 14
• 9 <= 17
• 9 >= 25
• 9 == 13
• 9 != 13
• 9 !< 25
• 9 <> 25

Note: Be careful. In math you are familiar with using the symbol = to mean equal and ≠ to mean not equal, but in many programming languages the ≠ is not used and the = symbol means assignment.

## Key Terms

relational operator
An operator that gives a Boolean value by evaluating the relationship between two operands.