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One of the most visible changes in Joomla 3 are form elements.

HTML select list

Classic select list

jQuery Chosen element

jQuery Chosen element

Introduction - formbehavior.chosen

I really like new style of select lists and looked for the way this change was done. After while of searching in Joomla code and playing with it, I realized the magic formula is:

JHtml::_('formbehavior.chosen', 'select');

This command calls function chosen of JHtmlFormbehavior class stored in

[joomla root]/libraries/cms/html/formbehavior.php

Basically, this function adds Javascript and stylesheet files of jQuery Chosen plugin to Joomla document and use its features for all select elements.

Chosen plugin in Joomla 3 is big step forward but Select2 in my opinion offers more. Specially, I need possibility to add images for items in select lists.

Class formbehavior2 for Select2

Analogous to chosen & formbehavior, I created following file:

abstract class JHtmlFormbehavior2
	 * @var    array  Array containing information for loaded files
	 * @since  3.0
	protected static $loaded = array();

	 * Method to load the Select2 JavaScript framework and supporting CSS into the document head
	 * @param   string  $selector  Class for Chosen elements. [optional]
	 * @param   string  $option    options for Select2 elements. [optional]
	 * @param   mixed   $debug     Is debugging mode on? [optional]
	 * @return  void
	 * @since   3.0
	public static function select2($selector = '.advancedSelect', $option = '', $debug = null)
		if (isset(static::$loaded[__METHOD__][$selector]))

		// Include jQuery

   	// If no debugging value is set, use the configuration setting
		if ($debug === null)
			$config = JFactory::getConfig();
			$debug  = (boolean) $config->get('debug');

		JHtml::_('script', 'jui/select2.min.js', false, true, false, false, $debug);
		JHtml::_('script', 'jui/select2_locale_cs.js', false, true, false, false, $debug);
		JHtml::_('stylesheet', 'jui/select2.css', false, true);
				jQuery(document).ready(function (){
					jQuery('" . $selector . "').select2({
						" .$option. "

		static::$loaded[__METHOD__][$selector] = true;


Function select2 load the Select2 JavaScript framework and supporting CSS into the document head.


Download this archive and copy included files to [joomla root].

Archive content:

Well! Now you can create awesome forms in Joomla using Select2.
see and try demo component with select2 form elements
& learn more on formbehavior2.select2 syntax.