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e·lec·tive / iˈlektiv/ • adj. 1. related to or working by means of election: an elective democracy. ∎  (of a person or office) appointed or filled by election: he had never held elective office. ∎  (of a body or position) possessing or giving the power to elect.2. (of a course of study) chosen by the student rather than compulsory. ∎  (of surgical or medical treatment) chosen by the patient rather than urgently necessary.• n. an optional course of study: up to half the credits in many public high schools are electives.DERIVATIVES: e·lec·tive·ly adv.