Etymology
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elective (adj.)

early 15c., "voluntary," from Late Latin electivus, from elect-, past-participle stem of eligere "to pick out, choose" (see election). In U.S., in reference to school subjects studied at the student's choice, first recorded 1847. As a noun, from 1701.

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Definitions of elective
1
elective (adj.)
subject to popular election;
elective official
Synonyms: elected
elective (adj.)
not compulsory;
an elective course of study
elective surgery
Synonyms: facultative
2
elective (n.)
a course that the student can select from among alternatives;
Synonyms: elective course
From wordnet.princeton.edu