Mother tongue

This term variably means (a) the language learned from the mother, (b) the first language learned, (c) the native language of an area or country, (d) the stronger (or dominant) language at any time of life, (e) the language used most by a person, (f) the language toward which the person has the more positive attitude and affection (Baker, 2000). See also native language.

This definition is part of our learning disabilities glossary. The education field is so full of acronyms and specialized words that it can seem like a confusing alphabet soup! Find out what AYP, IEP, 504, and many other abbreviations and words mean in this glossary of frequently used terms.