Context: I have a table with checkboxes at the beginning of every row. The user can select the rows and click on the top right button "Actions" to say "Delete checked items" etc. I also have a search functionality where the user can search for a given table entry.

The question is, if say the user has selected a few rows and proceeds to search for a specific item - in which case the table shows that particular successfully searched item only, does the user expect his previously checked rows to stay checked?

1 Answer 1


Switching context from selecting items in a list to searching, a user doesn't expect previous selected items to be selected again. But if you're not actually searching, and instead you're actually filtering the list based on user input - then the selected items should continue to be selected.

  • "if not actually searching, instead if you are filtering"... I don't get the difference. I mean, the table as a whole is presented first and every search is going to narrow the table rows down. Is that filtering or searching?
    – Srikanth
    Nov 19, 2018 at 16:15
  • 1
    @Srikanth In filtering, you're keeping context. So on each key stroke, the filtered list gets even more filtered. On Searching, you're providing a query string and hit search which lead to a result page. Nov 20, 2018 at 8:48

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