Function and usage of register_column_headers() in wordpress


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    The register_column_headers() function in WordPress is used to register column headers for a particular screen, typically in the WordPress admin area. This function is particularly useful when you are customizing admin lists or pages, allowing you to define what columns appear and how they are labeled.


    register_column_headers( string $screen, string[] $columns )


    This function helps you define the columns that should appear on a specific admin screen. It is part of a group of functions that work together for managing columns in admin screens, especially for list tables.

    Related functions:

    • get_column_headers(): Retrieves the headers of the columns.
    • print_column_headers(): Prints the headers of the columns.
    • get_hidden_columns(): Determines which columns should be hidden.


    1. $screen (string, required): This is the handle or identifier for the screen where you want to register the column headers. The screen handle is typically the hook name returned by WordPress functions like add_menu_page() or add_submenu_page(). It uniquely identifies the screen on which the columns will be displayed.

    2. $columns (string[], required): An array of columns that you want to display on the specified screen. The array is associative, where keys are the column IDs (used in the code to identify columns) and values are the translated column names (what will be displayed to the user in the admin interface).

      Example format:

      $columns = [
        'column_id_1' => __('Column Name 1', 'text-domain'),
        'column_id_2' => __('Column Name 2', 'text-domain'),
        // ... additional columns ...

    Sample Usage:

    Let's say you are adding a custom post type and want to customize the columns shown in its admin list:

    function my_custom_post_type_columns() {
        $screen = 'edit-my_custom_post_type';
        $columns = array(
            'cb' => '<input type="checkbox" />', // for checkboxes
            'title' => __('Title', 'my-text-domain'),
            'author' => __('Author', 'my-text-domain'),
            // ... more columns as needed ...
        register_column_headers($screen, $columns);
    add_action('admin_init', 'my_custom_post_type_columns');

    In this example, a function my_custom_post_type_columns is defined to register custom columns for a custom post type 'my_custom_post_type'. The columns include a checkbox, title, and author. This function is hooked to admin_init, ensuring it runs during the admin initialization phase.

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