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SELECT is a keyword in the SQL (Structured Query Language) used to retrieve data from a database. It is one of the fundamental and most commonly used commands in SQL for querying and fetching specific information.

The syntax of the SELECT statement is as follows:

SELECT column1, column2, ...
FROM table_name
WHERE condition;

Key points about the SELECT statement:

  1. Columns: Specify the columns you want to retrieve data from. You can select specific columns by listing their names or use “*” to select all columns.
  2. FROM: Specify the table or tables from which you want to retrieve data.
  3. WHERE: Optional clause used to filter the rows based on specific conditions. It allows you to specify conditions using comparison operators such as “=”, “<>”, “<“, “>”, etc.
  4. Examples:
  • SELECT * FROM employees; retrieves all columns from the “employees” table.
  • SELECT first_name, last_name FROM customers WHERE country = 'USA'; retrieves the “first_name” and “last_name” columns from the “customers” table where the country is “USA”.

The SELECT statement is flexible and powerful, allowing you to combine multiple tables, perform calculations, apply functions, and use various clauses like ORDER BY, GROUP BY, JOIN, and more to manipulate and transform the retrieved data according to your needs.

It is important to note that the SELECT statement is not limited to a specific database system and can be used in various SQL-based databases such as MySQL, Oracle, PostgreSQL, and SQL Server, with minor syntax differences.

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