# How To Sort A Dictionary By Value in Python?

Summary: Use one of the following methods to sort a dictionary by value:

1. Using The sorted(dict1, key=dict1.get) Method.
2. Using Dictionary Comprehension And Lambda With sorted() Method.
3. Using OrderedDict (For Older Versions Of Python).
4. Using itemgetter() with sorted() Method.
5. Using Counter subclass.

Problem: Given a dictionary; how to sort it by values?

Example: The following example shows a dictionary by the name `rank` that stores the names of individuals as the keys while their corresponding ranks represent the values. We shall be using this example as a reference while discussing the solutions.

```rank = {
'Bob': 2,
'Alice': 4,
'Sharon': 5,
'Dwyane': 1,
'John': 3
}

# Some Procedure to Sort the Dictionary by its Values```

Output:

`{'Dwyane': 1, 'Bob': 2, 'John': 3, 'Alice': 4, 'Sharon': 5}`

Before we dive into the solutions here are a few Points To Remember about dictionaries:

• From Python 3.7 onwards, Python dictionaries are ordered (Insertion is also ordered). This means the ordered in which the keys are inserted into dictionaries are preserved.
• In normal scenario sorting dictionaries, results in a sorted dictionary with respect to its keys.

To get a better insight into Python dictionaries, please follow our Blog Tutorial on dictionaries here. However, the purpose of this article is purely to guide you through the numerous methods to sort a dictionary based on the values instead of the keys. So without further delay let us dive into the solutions.

## Method 1: Using The sorted(dict1, key=dict1.get) Method

The `sorted()` method is an in-built method in Python which is used to sort the elements of an iterable in a specific order (ascending or descending). After sorting the elements it returns the sorted sequence, in the form of a sorted list.

Syntax:

In order to sort the dictionary using the values, we can leverage the power of the `sorted()` function. To sort the dictionary based on the value, we can use the `get()` method and pass it to the `key` argument of the `sorted()` function.

Let us have a look at the following code to understand the usage of `sorted` function in order to solve our problem:

```rank = {
'Bob': 2,
'Alice': 4,
'Sharon': 5,
'Dwyane': 1,
'John': 3
}

for w in sorted(rank, key=rank.get):
print(w, rank[w])```

Output:

```Dwyane 1
Bob 2
John 3
Alice 4
Sharon 5```

In order to sort the dictionary using its values in reverse order, we need to specify the `reverse` argument as `true`, i.e.,

```rank = {
'Bob': 2,
'Alice': 4,
'Sharon': 5,
'Dwyane': 1,
'John': 3
}

for w in sorted(rank, key=rank.get, reverse=True):
print(w, rank[w])```

Output:

```Sharon 5
Alice 4
John 3
Bob 2
Dwyane 1```

## Method 2: Using Dictionary Comprehension And Lambda With sorted() Method

If you are using Python 3.6 and above then our problem can be solved in a single line using a dictionary comprehension and a lambda function within the `sorted `method. This is an efficient and concise solution to sort dictionaries based on their values.

⦿ Dictionary Comprehension is a concise and memory-efficient way to create and initialize dictionaries in one line of Python code. It consists of two parts: expression and context. The expression defines how to map keys to values. The context loops over an iterable using a single-line for loop and defines which (key, value) pairs to include in the new dictionary. To learn more about dictionary comprehensions in python have a look at our blog tutorial here.

Now, let us have a look at the following code given below that explains the usage of dictionary comprehensions to solve our problem in a single lie of code.

```rank = {
'Bob': 2,
'Alice': 4,
'Sharon': 5,
'Dwyane': 1,
'John': 3
}

print({k: v for k, v in sorted(rank.items(), key=lambda item: item)})```

Output:

`{'Dwyane': 1, 'Bob': 2, 'John': 3, 'Alice': 4, 'Sharon': 5}`

## Method 3: Using OrderedDict (For Older Versions Of Python)

Dictionaries are generally unordered for versions prior to Python 3.7, so it is not possible to sort a dictionary directly. Therefore, to overcome this constraint we need to use the `OrderedDict` subclass.

⦿ An `OrderedDict` is a dictionary subclass that preserves the order in which key-values are inserted in a dictionary. It is included in the `collections `module in Python.

Let us have a look at how we can use `OrderedDict` to order dictionaries in earlier versions of Python and sort them.

```from collections import OrderedDict
rank = {
'Bob': 2,
'Alice': 4,
'Sharon': 5,
'Dwyane': 1,
'John': 3
}
a = OrderedDict(sorted(rank.items(), key=lambda x: x))
for key,value in a.items():
print(key, value)```

Output:

```('Dwyane', 1)
('Bob', 2)
('John', 3)
('Alice', 4)
('Sharon', 5)```

## Method 4: Using itemgetter() With The sorted() Method

⦿ `itemgetter()` is a built-in function of the `operator `module that constructs a callable that accepts an iterable like a list, tuple, set, etc as input and fetches the nth element out of it.

Example:

```from operator import itemgetter

rank = {
'Bob': 2,
'Alice': 4,
'Sharon': 5,
'Dwyane': 1,
'John': 3
}

a = sorted(rank.items(), key=itemgetter(1))
print(dict(a))```

Output:

`{'Dwyane': 1, 'Bob': 2, 'John': 3, 'Alice': 4, 'Sharon': 5}`

In the above example `a` stores a list of tuples. Therefore we converted it to a `dictionary` explicitly, while printing.

## Method 5: Using Counter

Counter is a dictionary subclass that is used for counting hashable objects. Since the values we are using are integers, we can use the `Counter `class to sort them. The `Counter` class has to be imported from the collections module.

Disclaimer: This is a work-around for the problem at hand and might not fit in every situation. Since, values of the dictionary in our case are integers, the Counter subclass fits as a solution to our problem. Consider it as a bonus trick!😉

```from collections import Counter

rank = {
'Bob': 2,
'Alice': 4,
'Sharon': 5,
'Dwyane': 1,
'John': 3
}

count = dict(Counter(rank).most_common())
print(count)```

Output:

`{'Dwyane': 1, 'Bob': 2, 'John': 3, 'Alice': 4, 'Sharon': 5}`

⦿ In the above program the method `most_common()` has been used to return all elements in the Counter.

## Conclusion

In this we learned about the following methods to sort a dictionary by values in Python:

• Using The sorted(dict1, key=dict1.get) Method.
• Using Dictionary Comprehension And Lambda With sorted() Method.
• Using OrderedDict (For Older Versions Of Python).
• Using itemgetter() with sorted() Method.
• Using Counter subclass.

I hope after reading this article you can sort dictionaries by their values with ease. Please subscribe and stay tuned for more interesting articles in the future.

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