Python CSV Reader Tutorial – Reading CSV Files with Python

So, here is Python CSV Reader Tutorial. It might be handy when you want to work with spreadsheets. Like you need to export or import spreadsheets. And the best thing is Python has the inbuilt functionality to work with CSVs. And you can do it very quickly.

What is CSV?

CSV stands for Comma Separated Values. It is like a spreadsheet but it stores data in plain text, and the values are separated by a comma (,).

We can easily represent the Tabular data in a CSV format.

Consider the following table.

Name Rank City
Parmanu 1 Delhi
Super Commando Dhruva 2 Rajnagar
Doga 3 Mumbai

The above table can be represented in CSV as

The above examples are showing a minimal CSV data, but in real world, we use CSV for large datasets with large number of variables.

Python CSV Module

We have an inbuilt module named CSV in python. We can use it to read or write CSV files.
So if you want to work with CSV, you have to import this module.

Then you can work with CSV quickly, with the predefined functions. In this module, we already have all the necessary methods.

CSV Functions

We have many functions in the CSV modules, some of them are:

  • csv.reader(csvfile, dialect=’excel’, **fmtparams)
  • csv.writer(csvfile, dialect=’excel’, **fmtparams)
  • csv.register_dialect(name[, dialect[, **fmtparams]])
  • csv.unregister_dialect(name)
  • csv.get_dialect(name)
  • csv.list_dialects()
  • csv.field_size_limit([new_limit])

But in this post, we will see how to read and write CSV files in our Python Project.

Python CSV Reader and Writer Project

Now lets, use the functions in our Python Project. Here I will be using PyCharm. I would recommend this IDE as it is the best according to me.
Check Best Python IDEs for Windows
But you can use any other IDE or source code editor.

Creating a new Project

  • So in your PyCharm (I am using the community edition which is free), create a new Project.

python csv reader

  • So I have a project named, CSVReader (Though we will be doing the Write Operation as Well 😛 ).

Python CSV Reader

  • In your project create a new Python File named

csv reader

  • Now, first we will import the csv module in the file that we just created.

  • But to read csv, the first thing we need is a csv file itself. So in your project create a new file named data.csv and write the following data in it.

  • So, we have a CSV file to read. Now we will read the contents of this file,  so open the python file that we created.

What we Did?

Here first we are opening the file that contains the CSV data (data.csv), then we created the reader using the reader() function of csv module. Then we are traversing through all the rows using the for loop, and we are printing the row as well.

You can run the code to see the output.

python csv reader
Python CSV Reader

You see we are getting the rows, but it is same as reading a normal file. As it is a CSV data we can read the data separately as well.

Modify the code as below. 

Running the above code will give you the output as.

python csv reader

But don’t forget to close the opened file as.

Python CSV Writer

Now lets see how we can write CSV files.

  • We need to create a new file. I have created in the project and write the following code.

  • Running the above code will give you the following output.

python csv writer

  • Yeah, it is working absolutely fine.

That’s all for this Python CSV Reader Tutorial friends. If you have any question, then leave your comments. If you found this tutorial helpful, then please SHARE it with your friends. Thank You 🙂

Leave a Comment