selective

adjective
se·​lec·​tive | \ sə-ˈlek-tiv How to pronounce selective (audio) \

Definition of selective

1 : of, relating to, or characterized by selection : selecting or tending to select
2 : highly specific in activity or effect selective pesticides selective absorption

Other Words from selective

selectively adverb
selectiveness noun
selectivity \ sə-​ˌlek-​ˈti-​və-​tē How to pronounce selective (audio) , ˌsē-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for selective

Synonyms

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Examples of selective in a Sentence

The club is selective in choosing members. The college has a highly selective admissions process.
Recent Examples on the Web Califf has been not-so-subtly requesting that Congress give the FDA more authority to be more selective when deciding which opioid applications to approve. Nicholas Florko, STAT, 4 May 2022 Sometimes selective empathy is what is necessary for your own well-being and that of others. Lori Kuhn, Forbes, 3 May 2022 The truth is, all genealogies are selective, often by design. Maya Jasanoff, The New Yorker, 2 May 2022 But, was very selective so as not to embarrass my family in any manner. Harish Pullanoor, Quartz, 13 Feb. 2022 In 2022, the advertising companies are much more selective about making purchases, and their deals often spotlight marketing disciplines that are gaining more traction with clients. Brian Steinberg, Variety, 20 Apr. 2022 The Biden administration, which has been selective about putting too great of importance on any single policy speech, sought to elevate what White House officials billed as a major address. Chris Megerian, Vanessa Gera And Aamer Madhani, Anchorage Daily News, 27 Mar. 2022 Though Leto is known to be very selective about his roles, the through line for those selections is difficult to decipher. Lauren Larson, Men's Health, 21 Mar. 2022 Invites are selective, and tickets cost $35,000 each, with tables running from $200,000 to $300,000, per the New York Times. ELLE, 22 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'selective.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of selective

1625, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for selective

Time Traveler

The first known use of selective was in 1625

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Dictionary Entries Near selective

selection value

selective

selective absorption

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Statistics for selective

Last Updated

12 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Selective.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/selective. Accessed 23 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for selective

selective

adjective
se·​lec·​tive | \ sə-ˈlek-tiv How to pronounce selective (audio) \

Kids Definition of selective

: careful to choose or include only the best or most suitable individuals a selective college

selective

adjective
se·​lec·​tive | \ sə-ˈlek-tiv How to pronounce selective (audio) \

Medical Definition of selective

1 : of, relating to, or characterized by selection : selecting or tending to select
2 : highly specific in activity or effect selective pesticides selective permeability of a plasma membrane

Other Words from selective

selectively adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on selective

Nglish: Translation of selective for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of selective for Arabic Speakers

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