1. Although clinicians have been quick to adopt magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in the search for brain pathology in psychiatric disorders, the clinical utility of MRI is only now being well defined. 2. Numerous past computerized tomography or post-mortem tissue reports in patients with schizophrenia, affective disorders, dementia, autism, and many other psychiatric illnesses have suggested neuroanatomical substrates for these disorders. However, these techniques have several limitations. 3. The advent of MRI has allowed a high resolution method for examining the brain in vivo. It is important for psychiatrists to know the clinical utility, and the advantages/disadvantages of MR compared with CT. 4. In this article, the authors review the relevant MR literature with some illustrative cases where MRI provided clinically useful information. Recent advances in MRI technology that will have future applications in psychiatry are also discussed.