Manipulation of cell patterns in three dimensions in a manner that mimics natural tissue organization and function is critical for cell biological studies and likely essential for successfully regenerating tissues--especially cells with high physiological demands, such as those of the heart, liver, lungs, and articular cartilage.(1, 2) In the present study, we report on the feasibility of arranging iron oxide-labeled cells in three-dimensional hydrogels using magnetic fields. By manipulating the strength, shape, and orientation of the magnetic field and using crosslinking gradients in hydrogels, multi-directional cell arrangements can be produced in vitro and even directly in situ. We show that these ferromagnetic particles are nontoxic between 0.1 and 10 mg/mL; certain species of particles can permit or even enhance tissue formation, and these particles can be tracked using magnetic resonance imaging. Taken together, this approach can be adapted for studying basic biological processes in vitro, for general tissue engineering approaches, and for producing organized repair tissues directly in situ.