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jQuery Selectivity

Selectivity is a jQuery Selectboxes plugin.

Created by Arendjr

Modular and light-weight selection library for jQuery and Zepto.js

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Modular and light-weight selection library.

Build Status Selectivity on NPM



Selectivity doesn't require any external libraries to be loaded on your page, but it does have some optional dependencies:

  • There's a React build that provides the official Selectivity React API. If you wish to use this, React should be loaded on your page.
  • There's a jQuery build that provides the official Selectivity jQuery API. If you wish to use this, either jQuery or Zepto.js should be loaded on your page.
  • The default templates assume that you have included FontAwesome in your page to display the icons. If you do not want this, please specify custom templates.


Warning: Do you use Browserify or Webpack? Please use NPM as described below.

Download and unpack the latest release from the project website: https://arendjr.github.io/selectivity/

Copy the JavaScript and CSS file for your desired build from the archive into your project. See the following table to see which files you need:

BuildJavaScript fileCSS file
jQuery (development)selectivity-jquery.jsselectivity-jquery.css
jQuery (production)selectivity-jquery.min.jsselectivity-jquery.min.css
React (development)selectivity-react.jsselectivity-react.css
React (production)selectivity-react.min.jsselectivity-react.min.css
VanillaJS (development)selectivity.jsselectivity.css
VanillaJS (production)selectivity.min.jsselectivity.min.css

Reference the files from your HTML page like this:

    <link href="font-awesome.css" rel="stylesheet">
    <link href="selectivity.css" rel="stylesheet">
    <script src="jquery-or-react-or-zepto.js"></script>
    <script src="selectivity.js"></script>

Note the first line includes FontAwesome which is required for the default icons. This line is optional if you use custom templates.

The second line should reference the CSS file from the bundle you chose to use.

The third line should reference jQuery, React or Zepto.js as appropriate. This line is optional if you use the VanillaJS bundle. Note: If you want to use the React templates plugin, don't forget to also include react-dom.js.

Finally, the last line should reference the JavaScript file from the bundle you chose to use.

You are now ready to start using Selectivity as described on the Selectivity homepage: https://arendjr.github.io/selectivity/

Using NPM

Make sure you have Node.js installed and run:

$ npm install selectivity

Note you will need to include the CSS yourself. You can find it in node_modules/selectivity/selectivity.css.

Which module do I require?

You can require() Selectivity as follows:

var Selectivity = require('selectivity');

But, this will only expose the main Selectivity object and will load none of the plugins, nor enable any of the specialized APIs. You could say what you're getting is the core of the VanillaJS API.

If however, you just want to use the jQuery API with all the relevant plugins loaded, you can do this:


After this you can call the jQuery API as you would expect:


Similarly, if you want to use the React API with all its relevant plugins, you can do this:

var Selectivity = require('selectivity/react');

The Selectivity object you receive is the same one as if you'd required 'selectivity', but you get the React Component class as Selectivity.React so you can use it as follows:

<Selectivity.React {...props} />

Finally, if you're an expert (*) you can choose to use the VanillaJS API and enable just the plugins you want one by one. For example:

var Selectivity = require('selectivity');

var singleInput = new Selectivity.Inputs.Single({
    element: document.querySelector('...'),

All the modules listed in the table below under Creating custom builds can be required this way.

*) Using the VanillaJS API isn't really that hard, but all the examples and documentation assume you're using either the React or the jQuery API, so be prepared that you'll have to figure out a bit more on your own.

Ruby on Rails

Detailed information for selectivity-rails, including Installation and usage are provided in the gem's repository.


Once installed, you may want to customize Selectivity. For example, by specifying custom templates or localized strings. While creating a custom build is always an option (see details below), easier options exist.

To do any basic customization, you'll need a reference to the Selectivity object. If you have installed through NPM, you can get this object through var Selectivity = require('selectivity');. If you're using a jQuery build, the object is exposed as $.Selectivity. For non-jQuery builds that you included as a script, the object is exposed as global variable.

Example: Customizing localization in a jQuery build

$.Selectivity.Locale.noResultsForTerm = function(term) {
    return 'No results were found for <b>' + escape(term) + '</b>';

See locale.js for an overview of all localizable messages.

Example: Specifying a custom template when installed through NPM

var Selectivity = require('selectivity');
Selectivity.Templates.loading = function() {
    return '<div class="selectivity-loading"><div class="my-spinner"></div></div>';

See templates.js for an overview of all templates that can be customized.


For usage instructions, please see the Selectivity homepage: https://arendjr.github.io/selectivity/

Browser Support

  • Chrome
  • Firefox
  • Internet Explorer 10+
  • Safari 6+

Note that while Internet Explorer versions older than 10 are not supported, you might be able to get them to work, possibly with the use of some polyfills. Reports of success or patches to create a "legacy" build would be welcomed.

Build System

Selectivity is built modularly and uses Gulp as a build system to build its distributable files. To install the necessary dependencies for the build system, please run:

$ npm install -g gulp
$ npm install

Then you can generate new distributable files from the sources, using:

$ npm run build

Creating custom builds

If you want to create your own Selectivity library that contains just the modules you need, you can use the following command:

$ gulp [--api=<react-or-jquery>] --modules=<comma-separated-module-list>

The following modules are available:

inputs/emailImplements the 'Email' input type. This is a special case of the 'Multiple' input type with no dropdown and a specialized tokenizer for recognizing email addresses (including pasted content from address books).
inputs/multipleImplements the 'Multiple' input type. If you only want to use Selectivity with single values, you can leave this out.
inputs/singleImplements the 'Single' input type. If you only want to use Selectivity with multiple values, you can leave this out.
plugins/ajaxConvenience module for performing AJAX requests. Needed if you want to use any ajax options. If you use this module, you should also include the 'async' module to correctly handle out-of-order replies. This module relies on the presence of the [fetch()](https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/API/GlobalFetch/fetch) method which is only available in modern browsers, so you should either provide a polyfill if you want to support older browsers, or -- if you're creating a jQuery build -- you can use the 'jquery/ajax' module to provide a fallback that uses $.ajax() instead.
plugins/asyncBlocks the query function from calling its callback functions if another query has been issued since. This prevents out-of-order replies from remote sources to display incorrect results. This module is only needed if you use the query function and call its callbacks asynchronously.
plugins/diacriticsDiacritics support. This will make sure that "Łódź" will match when the user searches for "Lodz", for example. However, if you always query a server when searching for results, you may want to solve matching of diacritics server-side, in which case this module can be omitted.
plugins/keyboardProvides keyboard support for navigating through the dropdown. If you don't use a dropdown, or are only targeting mobile, you may want to leave this module out.
plugins/submenuExtends the default dropdown so that multiple levels of submenus can be created.
plugins/tokenizerDefault tokenizer implementation. This module adds support for the tokenSeparators option which is used by the default tokenizer. Support for tokenizers themselves is already included in the "multiple" module, so you can omit this module if you don't want to use any tokenizers or want to specify your own tokenizer.
plugins/jquery/ajaxProvides a fallback to use $.ajax() instead of the fetch() method for performing AJAX requests. (Requires jQuery 3.0 or higher)
plugins/jquery/traditionalThis module allows you to convert an HTML5 <select> form element into a Selectivity instance. The items will be initialized from the <option> and <optgroup> elements. (jQuery only)
plugins/react/templatesAdds support for React (JSX) templates. Requires react-dom to be available.
dropdownModule that implements the dropdown. You will most likely want to include this, unless you only want to use Selectivity without any dropdown or you provide a completely custom implementation instead.
localeLocalizable content pulled in by the default templates. You may or may not decide to use these with your own templates. Also used for localizable messages by the ajax module.
templatesDefault templates to use with Selectivity. If you provide your own templates, you may want to skip this.

Note that the build system automatically resolves dependencies between modules. So for example, if you specify you want the submenu plugin, the dropdown module will be automatically included.


$ gulp --api=react --modules=inputs/multiple,dropdown

This will create a custom build that uses the React API and which has support for selecting multiple values with a dropdown. The build will be saved in build/selectivity-custom.js. There will be no plugins available, you will have to provide your own templates with their localizable content, and you cannot use this build for creating a single-select input.

To display any other options available for custom builds, run gulp usage.

Development server

While developing, you can start a development server like this:

$ gulp dev --export-global [--api=<jquery-or-react>] [--source-map]

You may want to pass the --source-map parameter to generate a source map for debugging. Check out the various files in the demos/ directory that are set up to with custom builds as they can be used for development.

Unit Tests

Unit tests are available and can be ran using the following command:

$ gulp unit-tests


Selectivity is made available under the MIT license.


To read more about guidelines for submitting pull requests, please read the Contributing document.

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Download Github Page

The MIT License (MIT)