Understanding the implications of the three-dimensional coordinates for a molecule with several thousand atoms requires an understanding of, and practice with, 3-D imaging. For many biologists, this means acquiring a whole new set of skills. Foundations of Structural Biology is designed to provide the learning mechanism for visualizing protein or DNA segments in terms of their three-dimensional conformations. It describes how to use coordinate databanks and the coordinates and is aimed at helping students develop the ability to use stereographics. Much of the entire presentation requires the use of stereographics, and instructions on how to develop these skills are contained in the text. To test visualization ability, each chapter contains a problem set requiring the use of stereoviewing. The primer is designed to provide other basic techniques as needed to use the growing structural biology database.