Joderic C. Navarrete


Language plays a crucial role in the teaching and learning process. It is a powerful tool a learner could use to comprehend and learn. However, the persistent debate whether to utilize English or the mother tongue (vernacular or first language of the child) as the medium of instruction has created havoc in the educational arena, especially the non-English speaking countries like the Philippines. The purpose of this paper is to present a brief historical background on the language policy of the Philippine educational system and its issues; a review on the importance of language in education, and the different philosophical underpinnings relative to the use of mother tongue vis-a-vis the English language as a medium of instruction.


Language, medium of instruction, mother tongue, English language, Philippines

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