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Select features for editing

On the Edit tab, in the Selection group, the selection tools use the pointer to select features interactively by clicking or drawing a selection boundary. You can use them to identify features or edit attribute values.

The dialog box launcher button in the lower right corner opens the Options dialog box, where you can change settings for the selection chip and interactive selection graphic.

To learn more about optional settings, see Change selection settings for editing.

Selection methods

Each selection tool draws a specific geometric shape as a selection boundary. The selected features highlight on the map, and the number of features in the selection appears on the status bar at the bottom of the active map or scene.

  1. On the Edit tab, in the Selection group, click the selection drop-down menu and choose a tool.
  2. Click the map and draw the prescribed shape across the feature or features:
    • Rectangle Select—Click a point feature or segment, or drag the rectangle across the feature.
    • Polygon Select By Polygon—Click the map to create the vertices of the polygon. Double-click to close the polygon and select the feature.
    • Lasso Select By Lasso—Drag the pointer to create the lasso.
    • Circle Select By Circle—Drag the pointer to create the circle.
    • Line Select By Line—Click the map to create the vertices of the line. Double-click to end the line and make the selection.
    • Trace Select By Trace—Click a polyline or polygon segment and drag the pointer along the boundary and other contiguous features. Double-click to end the trace and make the selection.
    Tip:

    When choosing a selection tool, consider the adjacent features you want to avoid selecting.

  3. To clear the selection, do one of the following:
    • Click anywhere on the map away from selectable features.
    • On the Edit tab, in the Selection group, click Clear Clear Selected.

Keyboard shortcuts

Keyboard shortcutFunctionDescription

Shift+ Select Select

Add the selected feature Select All

Adds the selected feature to the selection.

Ctrl+ Select Select

Remove the selected feature Clear Selected

Removes the selected feature from the selection.

Ctrl+Shift+ Select Select

Select only this feature Unselect

Adds the selected feature to the selection and removes all other features from the selection.

Keyboard shortcuts for the selection tools

Select and modify features

In the Modify Features pane, selection tools that appear with an active tool include additional functionality for performing specific types of selections. Using them to select features when using an editing tool is the best practice.

Except for the topology selection tool, selection tools in the pane inherit the selection method from the ribbon. For example, choosing the Polygon Select By Polygon tool on the ribbon also causes the active selection tool in the pane to draw a polygon.

The selection tools and how they work are described in the following table.

Selection toolDescription
Active Select Active Select

Clicking the tool finishes the current edit and the active editing tool starts modifying the new selection. This selection tool is available with most general editing tools and inherits its selection method from the ribbon.

Select Annotation Select Annotation

Clicking the tool finishes the current edit and the active annotation tool starts modifying the new selection. This selection tool is available only with annotation editing tools and inherits its selection method from the ribbon. It selects only annotation features.

Select Topology Select Topology

Clicking the tool finishes the current edit and the active map topology tool starts modifying the new topology selection. This selection tool is available only with map topology editing tools and inherits its selection method from the ribbon. It selects only map topology edges.

Select overlapping features

When you select overlapping features by clicking them, a pop-up menu appears near the pointer enabling you to specify the feature you want to select. You can cycle through the selection and highlight a feature in a map or scene view, or hover over and click an item on a drop-down list.

  1. On the Edit tab, in the Selection group, click the selection drop-down arrow and click a selection tool that allows clicking to make a selection.
  2. Click overlapping features in the active map or scene.

    The Selection Chip pop-up menuSwitch Selection appears near the pointer.

  3. To cycle through the selection and select a feature, do one of the following:
    • Click the Selection Chip button Switch Selection, or press N.
    • Click the drop-down arrow and then hover over and click an item on a drop-down list.

Zoom to a selection

When you select features, you can right-click and zoom to the selection. Zooming to a selection places the selected features full screen in the center of the active view. This can be useful to quickly view and edit features.

  1. On the Edit tab, in the Selection group, click the selection drop-down arrow and click a selection tool that allows clicking to make a selection.
  2. Select one or more features.
  3. To zoom to the selection, do one of the following:
    • Right-click and click Zoom To Selection Zoom to Selected.
    • On the status bar at the bottom of the active map or scene view, click Zoom To Selection Zoom to Selected.

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