[ si-lek-tiv ]
/ sɪˈlɛk tɪv /


having the function or power of selecting; making a selection.
characterized by selection, especially fastidious selection.
of or relating to selection.
Electricity, Radio. having good selectivity.

Origin of selective

First recorded in 1615–25; select + -ive

SYNONYMS FOR selective

Related forms

se·lec·tive·ly, adverbse·lec·tive·ness, nounnon·se·lec·tive, adjectiveun·se·lec·tive, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for nonselective (1 of 2)


/ (ˌnɒnsɪˈlɛktɪv) /


(of a school, education system, etc) admitting all pupils regardless of ability; inclusive

British Dictionary definitions for nonselective (2 of 2)


/ (sɪˈlɛktɪv) /


of or characterized by selection
tending to choose carefully or characterized by careful choice
electronics occurring at, operating at, or capable of separating out a particular frequency or band of frequencies

Derived Forms

selectively, adverbselectiveness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012