MDragon00 MDragon00 - 2 years ago 2462
Android Question

Highlight selected item inside a RecyclerView

I'm having trouble with highlighted an item within a RecyclerView, similar to setting the selected item in a ListView.

At the moment, I've set up up the RecyclerView, have a default LayoutManager, and have an adapter which displays all the data. I've just recently got the

working (although I'm not sure if it should go in the
- not sure when
is called).

I've tried searching around, and the closest I've gotten is the question here. However, I'm completely lost in that question. Where is that
method (inside the adapter, inside the containing Activity/fragment, etc?). What is that
? What is
from and what does it do exactly? Essentially, I've gotten nowhere from that question, and it was the best resource I could find so far.

Here is my current code for setting up the RecyclerView:

// Sets up the main navigation
private void setupMainNav() {
// use this setting to improve performance if you know that changes
// in content do not change the layout size of the RecyclerView

// use a linear layout manager
LinearLayoutManager layoutManager = new LinearLayoutManager(getActivity());

// Create and set the adapter for this recyclerView
MainNavAdapter adapter = new MainNavAdapter(getActivity());

Here is my current code for the adapter:

class MainNavAdapter extends RecyclerView.Adapter<MainNavAdapter.ViewHolder> {
Context mContext;

// Holds the titles of every row
String[] rowTitles;

// Default constructor
MainNavAdapter(Context context) {
this.mContext = context;

// Get the rowTitles - the necessary data for now - from resources
rowTitles = context.getResources().getStringArray(R.array.nav_items);

// Simple class that holds all the views that need to be reused
class ViewHolder extends RecyclerView.ViewHolder{
View parentView; // The view which holds all the other views
TextView rowTitle; // The title of this item

// Default constructor, itemView holds all the views that need to be saved
public ViewHolder(View itemView) {

// Save the entire itemView, for setting listeners and usch later
this.parentView = itemView;

// Save the TextView- all that's supported at the moment
this.rowTitle = (TextView) itemView.findViewById(;

// Create new views (invoked by the layout manager)
public ViewHolder onCreateViewHolder(ViewGroup viewGroup, int i) {
// Create the view for this row
View row = LayoutInflater.from(mContext)
.inflate(R.layout.list_navmain_row, viewGroup, false);

// Create a new viewHolder which caches all the views that needs to be saved
ViewHolder viewHolder = new ViewHolder(row);

return viewHolder;

// Replace the contents of a view (invoked by the layout manager)
public void onBindViewHolder(ViewHolder viewHolder, int i) {
// - get element from your dataset at this position
// - replace the contents of the view with that element

// TODO: Make a better workaround for passing in the position to the listener
final int position = i;

// Set a listener for this entire view
viewHolder.parentView.setOnClickListener(new View.OnClickListener() {
public void onClick(View v) {
Toast.makeText(getActivity(), "Clicked on row: " + position, Toast.LENGTH_SHORT).show();

// Return the size of your dataset (invoked by the layout manager)
public int getItemCount() {
return rowTitles.length;

I would appreciate any help. Thank you.

Answer Source

RecyclerView does not handle item selection or states like a ListView does. Instead you have to handle this manually in your view holder.

The first thing you can do is declare your item view as clickable, in your `ViewHolder constructor :

    public ViewHolder(View itemView) {

        // Make this view clickable

        // ...

Then if you want to highlight the selection, you must keep track of the selected rows in your adapter (for example using a List of indices), and in your onBindViewHolder method :

public void onBindViewHolder(ViewHolder viewHolder, int i) {
    // mark  the view as selected:

As a side note you should set the onClickListener on your parent view in the onCreateViewHolder instead of the onBindViewHolder. The onBindViewHolder method will be called many times for the same view holder, and you'll perform more operations than necessary

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