Meaning of CHOICE in English


I. choice 1 S1 W1 /tʃɔɪs/ BrE AmE noun

[ Date: 1200-1300 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: chois , from choisir 'to choose' ]

1 . [uncountable and countable] if you have a choice, you can choose between several things ⇨ choose

choice between

Voters have a choice between three main political parties.

choice of

You have a choice of hotel or self-catering accommodation.

He has to make some important choices.

They gave us no choice in the matter.

2 . [singular, uncountable] the range of people or things that you can choose from:

It was a small shop and there wasn’t much choice.

choice of

There is a choice of four different colours.

We offer a wide choice of wines and beers.

Consumers these days are spoilt for choice British English (=have a lot of things to choose from) .

3 . [countable] the person or thing that someone chooses

choice of

I don’t really like her choice of jewellery.

I think London was a good choice as a venue.

sb’s first/second choice

My first choice of college was Stanford.

4 . by choice if you do something by choice, you do it because you want to do it and not because you are forced to do it:

She lives alone by choice.

5 . the something of your choice the person or thing of your choice is the one that you would most like to choose:

My children cannot go to the school of their choice.

6 . the something of choice the thing of choice is the one that people prefer to use:

It is the drug of choice for this type of illness.


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■ verbs

▪ have a choice

Students have a choice between German and Spanish.

▪ make a choice (=choose something)

One of our course advisors can help you to make your choice.

▪ give somebody a choice

Her doctor gave her a choice: take medicine or lose weight.

▪ be faced with a choice

He was faced with a difficult choice.

▪ have no choice (but to do something)

The men had no choice but to obey.

▪ leave somebody with no choice

I was left with no choice but to resign.

▪ exercise your choice formal (=make a choice - used especially when talking about someone using their right to choose)

Everyone should have the right to exercise choice in matters of relationships.


▪ the right/wrong choice

I think you’ve made the right choice.

▪ a difficult choice

It was a very difficult choice for me.

▪ a stark choice (=a choice between two unpleasant things that you must make)

We faced a stark choice: steal or starve.

▪ (a) free choice

Students have an entirely free choice of what to study at university.

▪ an informed choice (=a choice based on knowledge of the facts about something)

The patient should have enough information to make an informed choice.

▪ consumer choice (=the opportunity for people to choose between different products)

I believe in free trade and consumer choice.

▪ parental choice

The aim is to extend parental choice in education.

■ phrases

▪ freedom of choice

Patients should have more freedom of choice.

▪ given the choice (=if you had a choice)

Given the choice, I probably wouldn’t work.

▪ have no choice in the matter

The village people had no choice in the matter.

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▪ choice : choice of :

The school seems OK, but there isn’t a great choice of courses.

| have a choice (=be able to choose from several things) :

With her high grades and athletic skill, Celeste had her choice of colleges.

| have no choice but to do something (=to be forced to do something because there is nothing else you can choose) :

Spooner says he had no choice but to file for bankruptcy.

| wide choice (=a lot of things to choose from) :

There is a wide choice of hotels and hostels in the town.

▪ option one of the things that you can choose to do in a particular situation:

He basically has two options: he can have the surgery, or he can give up playing football.

| keep/leave your options open (=delay choosing so that you continue to have several things to choose from) :

I haven’t signed any contracts yet – I want to keep my options open.

▪ alternative one of two or more ways of doing something:

Did you consider other alternatives before you moved in with Lucy?

| alternative to :

There is no practical alternative to our current policy.

| have no alternative (=to not have a choice) :

He says he doesn’t want to see a doctor, but I’m afraid he has no alternative.

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▪ choice something or someone that has been chosen:

Maria was very pleased with her choice.

| first/second/third choice (=the thing you wanted most, the thing you wanted most after that etc) :

Greece was our first choice for a vacation, but all the flights were full.

| somebody’s choice of :

I don’t like his choice of friends.

▪ selection a small group of the best things that have been chosen from a larger group: selection of :

She showed me a selection of her drawings.


a selection of songs from ‘West Side Story’

II. choice 2 BrE AmE adjective

1 . [only before noun] formal choice food is of very good quality:

choice steak

We select only the choicest apples for our pies.

2 . a few choice words/phrases if you use a few choice words, you say exactly what you mean in an angry way:

He told us what he thought of the idea in a few choice words.

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.