PHP Overriding and Overloading

In PHP, you can use overriding and overloading to modify the behavior of methods inherited from parent classes. Let’s explore these concepts in more detail:

Method Overriding:

Method overriding allows a child class to provide its own implementation of a method that is already defined in its parent class. The child class can override a parent class method by defining a method with the same name and parameters. The parent keyword can be used to refer to the parent class within the overridden method.

class Animal {
    public function makeSound() {
        echo "Animal is making a sound.";

class Dog extends Animal {
    public function makeSound() {
        echo "Dog is barking.";

$animal = new Animal();
$animal->makeSound();   // Output: Animal is making a sound.

$dog = new Dog();
$dog->makeSound();      // Output: Dog is barking.

In the above example, the Dog class overrides the makeSound() method defined in the Animal class. When calling the makeSound() method on an instance of Dog, the overridden method in the Dog class is executed instead of the one in the Animal class.

Method Overloading:

Method overloading allows a class to have multiple methods with the same name but different parameters. However, PHP does not natively support method overloading based on different parameter lists like some other languages do. Instead, you can simulate method overloading by using func_num_args(), func_get_args(), and func_get_arg() functions to handle variable-length arguments.

class Calculator {
    public function add() {
        $args = func_get_args();
        $sum = 0;
        foreach ($args as $arg) {
            $sum += $arg;
        return $sum;

$calc = new Calculator();
echo $calc->add(2, 4, 6);   // Output: 12
echo $calc->add(1, 3);      // Output: 4

In the above example, the Calculator class defines an add() method that can accept any number of arguments. The func_get_args() function retrieves all the arguments passed to the method, and the method then performs the addition operation on those arguments.

By using this approach, you can achieve a similar effect to method overloading by handling different numbers and types of arguments within a single method.

Please note that while true method overloading is not directly supported in PHP, you can use various workarounds, such as using default parameter values or implementing specific logic based on the type of arguments, to achieve similar functionality.