Recently, it was demonstrated by the use of the competitive and selective antagonist (R,S)-alpha-methyl-4-carboxyphenylglycine (MCPG) that metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR) activation is required to induce long-term potentiation (LTP) in the hippocampus. Accordingly, we investigated whether MCPG also inhibits spatial learning. Rats were trained on a spatial alternation task in a Y-maze with footshock reinforcement, and MCPG (0.0208 mg) was injected intracerebroventricularly prior to training and/or retention test. Animals injected pre-training are clearly impaired in retention, whereas preretention application was without effect. A state dependency could be excluded. Additionally, MCPG at the same concentration completely blocks a potentiation at perforant path/dentate gyrus synapses in vivo. These results strongly implicate a role of mGluRs in spatial learning and LTP.