individual edges scale

I hope someone here can help me. I searched quite a bit but could not find anything.
When I model in max, a feature I use a lot is local transformation of edges or faces, for example, scaling all selected edges locally instead of the whole selection. Blender have this option in separated objects, manipulating each local pivot alone, but I could not find the same possibility for edges and face modeling. Is there such a thing in blender modeling?

have you used the “individual centers” editing pivot

Thank you for the very fast answer.
Do you mean this?
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikibooks/en/d/dc/Blender3D_RotationScalingPivot.png
Yes, I tried. It seems to work only with objects.