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To choose and focus on a single person or thing out of a group of others. A noun or pronoun can be used between "single" and "out." They singled out her project from all the other applicants for its creative and ingenious design. For some reason, the bullies keep singling me out to pick on each day.
single someone or something out (for something)
to choose or pick someone or something for something; to select an eligible person or thing for something. The committee singled her out for a special award. We singled out Liz for special honors.
Choose or distinguish from others, as in We singled him out from all the other applicants. This idiom was first recorded in 1629.
To choose or distinguish someone or something from others: We singled her out from the list of applicants because she had a college degree. Unable to determine who had committed the offense, the teacher singled out the most mischievous student for punishment.