Pass a JavaScript function as parameter

The Question :

718 people think this question is useful

How do I pass a function as a parameter without the function executing in the “parent” function or using eval()? (Since I’ve read that it’s insecure.)

I have this:

addContact(entityId, refreshContactList());

It works, but the problem is that refreshContactList fires when the function is called, rather than when it’s used in the function.

I could get around it using eval(), but it’s not the best practice, according to what I’ve read. How can I pass a function as a parameter in JavaScript?

The Question Comments :

The Answer 1

988 people think this answer is useful

You just need to remove the parenthesis:

addContact(entityId, refreshContactList);

This then passes the function without executing it first.

Here is an example:

function addContact(id, refreshCallback) {
    // You can also pass arguments if you need to
    // refreshCallback(id);

function refreshContactList() {
    alert('Hello World');

addContact(1, refreshContactList);

The Answer 2

386 people think this answer is useful

If you want to pass a function, just reference it by name without the parentheses:

function foo(x) {
function bar(func) {
    func("Hello World!");

//alerts "Hello World!"

But sometimes you might want to pass a function with arguments included, but not have it called until the callback is invoked. To do this, when calling it, just wrap it in an anonymous function, like this:

function foo(x) {
function bar(func) {

//alerts "Hello World!" (from within bar AFTER being passed)
bar(function(){ foo("Hello World!") });

If you prefer, you could also use the apply function and have a third parameter that is an array of the arguments, like such:

function eat(food1, food2)
    alert("I like to eat " + food1 + " and " + food2 );
function myFunc(callback, args)
    //do stuff
    //execute callback when finished
    callback.apply(this, args);

//alerts "I like to eat pickles and peanut butter"
myFunc(eat, ["pickles", "peanut butter"]); 

The Answer 3

54 people think this answer is useful

Example 1:

funct("z", function (x) { return x; });

function funct(a, foo){
    foo(a) // this will return a

Example 2:

function foodemo(value){
    return 'hello '+value;

function funct(a, foo){

//call funct    
funct('world!',foodemo); //=> 'hello world!'

look at this

The Answer 4

36 people think this answer is useful

To pass the function as parameter, simply remove the brackets!

function ToBeCalled(){
  alert("I was called");

function iNeedParameter( paramFunc) {
   //it is a good idea to check if the parameter is actually not null
   //and that it is a function
   if (paramFunc && (typeof paramFunc == "function")) {

//this calls iNeedParameter and sends the other function to it

The idea behind this is that a function is quite similar to a variable. Instead of writing

function ToBeCalled() { /* something */ }

you might as well write

var ToBeCalledVariable = function () { /* something */ }

There are minor differences between the two, but anyway – both of them are valid ways to define a function. Now, if you define a function and explicitly assign it to a variable, it seems quite logical, that you can pass it as parameter to another function, and you don’t need brackets:


The Answer 5

17 people think this answer is useful

There is a phrase amongst JavaScript programmers: “Eval is Evil” so try to avoid it at all costs!

In addition to Steve Fenton’s answer, you can also pass functions directly.

function addContact(entity, refreshFn) {

function callAddContact() {
    addContact("entity", function() { DoThis(); });

The Answer 6

8 people think this answer is useful

I chopped all my hair off with that issue. I couldn’t make the examples above working, so I ended like :

function foo(blabla){
    var func = new Function(blabla);
// to call it, I just pass the js function I wanted as a string in the new one...

And that’s working like a charm … for what I needed at least. Hope it might help some.

The Answer 7

6 people think this answer is useful

I suggest to put the parameters in an array, and then split them up using the .apply() function. So now we can easily pass a function with lots of parameters and execute it in a simple way.

function addContact(parameters, refreshCallback) {
    refreshCallback.apply(this, parameters);

function refreshContactList(int, int, string) {
    alert(int + int);

addContact([1,2,"str"], refreshContactList); //parameters should be putted in an array

The Answer 8

5 people think this answer is useful

You can also use eval() to do the same thing.

//A function to call
function needToBeCalled(p1, p2)

//A function where needToBeCalled passed as an argument with necessary params
//Here params is comma separated string
function callAnotherFunction(aFunction, params)
    eval(aFunction + "("+params+")");

//A function Call
callAnotherFunction("needToBeCalled", "10,20");

That’s it. I was also looking for this solution and tried solutions provided in other answers but finally got it work from above example.

The Answer 9

2 people think this answer is useful

Here it’s another approach :

function a(first,second)    
return (second)(first);           

a('Hello',function(e){alert(e+ ' world!');}); //=> Hello world     

The Answer 10

2 people think this answer is useful

In fact, seems like a bit complicated, is not.

get method as a parameter:

 function JS_method(_callBack) { 



You can give as a parameter method:

    JS_method(function (d) {
           //Finally this will work.

The Answer 11

2 people think this answer is useful

The other answers do an excellent job describing what’s going on, but one important “gotcha” is to make sure that whatever you pass through is indeed a reference to a function.

For instance, if you pass through a string instead of a function you’ll get an error:

function function1(my_function_parameter){

function function2(){
 alert('Hello world');   

function1(function2); //This will work

function1("function2"); //This breaks!

See JsFiddle

The Answer 12

0 people think this answer is useful

Some time when you need to deal with event handler so need to pass event too as an argument , most of the modern library like react, angular might need this.

I need to override OnSubmit function(function from third party library) with some custom validation on reactjs and I passed the function and event both like below


    <button className="img-submit" type="button"  onClick=
 {onSubmit}>Upload Image</button>

MADE A NEW FUNCTION upload and called passed onSubmit and event as arguments

<button className="img-submit" type="button"  onClick={this.upload.bind(this,event,onSubmit)}>Upload Image</button>

  //custom codes are done here

The Answer 13

-3 people think this answer is useful

You can use a JSON as well to store and send JS functions.

Check the following:

var myJSON = 
    "myFunc1" : function (){
    "myFunc2" : function (functionParameter){

function main(){

This will print ‘a’.

The following has the same effect with the above:

var myFunc1 = function (){

var myFunc2 = function (functionParameter){

function main(){

Which is also has the same effect with the following:

function myFunc1(){

function myFunc2 (functionParameter){

function main(){

And a object paradigm using Class as object prototype:

function Class(){
    this.myFunc1 =  function(msg){

    this.myFunc2 = function(callBackParameter){

function main(){    
    var myClass = new Class();  

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