1. The act of selecting something: looked at the pears and made a careful selection.
2. One that is selected, such as a literary or musical text chosen for reading or performance: For her last selection she sang an old favorite.
a. A carefully chosen or representative collection of people or things: a book containing a selection of the author's best work.
b. A range of things from which one can make a choice: a store with a wide selection of magazines. See Synonyms at choice.
4. Biology A natural or artificial process that involves the survival and reproduction of some kinds of organisms instead of others (because they have traits that are better adapted to the environment or that are preferred by a breeder, for example) and results in changes in the traits of a population or species.
se·lection·al (-shə-nəl) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.
American Heritage Dictionary Products
The American Heritage Dictionary, 5th Edition
The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms
The American Heritage Roget's Thesaurus
Curious George's Dictionary
The American Heritage Children's Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo-European Roots
The American Heritage Student Grammar Dictionary
The American Heritage Desk Dictionary + Thesaurus
The American Heritage Science Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Business Terms
The American Heritage Student Dictionary
The American Heritage Essential Student Thesaurus