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In this letter, an adaptive spatial modulation (ASM) transmission scheme is proposed to achieve better system performance under a fixed data rate. The proposed scheme is based on a developed modulation order selection criterion (MOSC), so as to minimize the conditioned pairwise error probability (PEP) for each channel realization. Furthermore, the special information-conveying mode of spatial modulation (SM) is utilized to reduce the complexity of the proposed algorithm. Simulation results show that the proposed adaptive SM scheme provides considerable system performance improvement compared to original SM system.