adjective Date: 1625 1. of, relating to, or characterized by selection ; selecting or tending to select 2. highly specific in activity or effect <
selective pesticides
selective absorption
selectively adverbselectiveness nounselectivity noun

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

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  • selective — UK US /sɪˈlektɪv/ adjective ► intentionally choosing certain things or people, and not others: be selective about sth »We need to be more selective about the people we hire. be selective in sth/doing sth »Banks have become more selective in… …   Financial and business terms

  • Selective — Se*lect ive, a. Selecting; tending to select. [1913 Webster] This selective providence of the Almighty. Bp. Hall. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • selective — (adj.) 1620s; see SELECT (Cf. select) + IVE (Cf. ive). Related: Selectively; selectiveness. Selective service is from 1917, American English …   Etymology dictionary

  • selective — index adoptive, discretionary, discriminating (distinguishing), discriminating (judicious), disjunctive (alternative …   Law dictionary

  • selective — [adj] discriminating careful, choicy, choosy, discerning, discriminatory, eclectic, fussy, judicious, particular, persnickety*, picky, scrupulous, select; concepts 404,542 Ant. open, uncaring, undiscriminating, unselective …   New thesaurus

  • selective — ► ADJECTIVE 1) relating to or involving selection. 2) tending to choose carefully. 3) (of a process or agent) affecting some things and not others. DERIVATIVES selectively adverb selectiveness noun selectivity noun …   English terms dictionary

  • selective — [sə lek′tiv] adj. 1. of or characterized by selection 2. a) having the power of selecting; tending to select b) tending to select carefully; fastidious; discriminating 3. Radio excluding oscillations on all frequencies except the one desired… …   English World dictionary

  • selective — [[t]sɪle̱ktɪv[/t]] 1) ADJ GRADED: ADJ n A selective process applies only to a few things or people. Selective breeding may result in a greyhound running faster and seeing better than a wolf. ...selective education. Derived words: selectively ADV… …   English dictionary

  • selective — adj. VERBS ▪ be ADVERB ▪ extremely, fairly, very, etc. ▪ highly ▪ increasi …   Collocations dictionary

  • selective — se|lec|tive [sıˈlektıv] adj 1.) careful about what you choose to do, buy, allow etc selective about/in ▪ We re very selective about what we let the children watch. ▪ selective schools (=that choose which students to accept) ▪ He has a very… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • selective —    indiscriminate    It denotes various military activities, where you wish to play down the horror. Selective ordnance is usually napalm, less widely destructive than a nuclear blast but hardly discriminating in its victims. A selective strike… …   How not to say what you mean: A dictionary of euphemisms

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