The purpose of this study was to find out pre-service chemistry teachers' explanations and representations regarding ionization and dissolution concepts. Data were collected through open ended questions from seven respondents. Findings indicated that only three participants agreed that solid AgCI partially dissolves in water. Moreover, only two of them drew this process at the microscopic level correctly. Similarly, three respondents accepted that solid NaCI dissolves in water not ionizes. Moreover, only two of them were able to draw this process at the microscopic level correctly. Finally, one participant stated that gaseous HCl ionizes in the water. Also, none of the participants represented this process correctly. (c) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. Open access under CC BY-NC-ND license.