This review is a reflection of my thinking as much as it is a reflection of existing research. My beliefs about what is important in chemical education, what I know about teaching and learning, and the idiosyncratic thought patterns that I use to make sense out of what I read and observe have inevitably influenced what I reviewed and how I interpreted it. This is self-evident and has undoubtedly been understood for centuries, but there is a new awareness of this constructive nature of learning that has shaped recent research in science education. Whether one traces this view of learning to Piaget as Bodner (1986) does in his discussion of constructivism, views it in terms of a new alternative conceptions-research paradigm as do Gilbert and Swift (1985), or in terms of artificial intelligence and cognitive science in general, as does Resnick (1987), it is a view that is shaping current research in education, and chemical education is no exception. If we can learn how, it will shape the teaching of chemistry as well.