In many multilingual contexts, mostly learning English becomes an additional language (EAL), where learners’ prior knowledge about his first language and culture is taken into consideration to facilitate L2 learning. This article reports a study in which teachers of English were asked to express their beliefs on mother tongue-based multilingual education from their teaching-learning experience of English in the context of Tamil Nadu. Interviews were conducted to collect the data. One of the findings indicates that considering the needs of the rural/first generation/regional medium students, teachers prefer bilingual teaching even in higher educational institutes to facilitate learning. However, some of them prefer English medium instruction because they think that too much use of the mother tongue hinders learners’ input of L2. Moreover, the study finds that teachers’ choice of medium of instruction in their L2 classroom is influenced by factors such as learners’ English language proficiency, educational and career opportunities.
Keywords: Multilingualism, mother tongue, education, language proficiency, higher education