The Course III curriculum connects the fundamental concepts learned in lectures to hands-on work in the laboratory. Some students may be confused by the Bulletin entries for the main sophomore subjects.

These courses have been interdigitated to provide a close connection between theory learned in class and experiments in the lab: In a typical sequence, you will spend ~3 weeks in lectures for 3.012, and then move into the lab (3.014) for one week of intensive application of the ideas just covered in lecture. During the lab weeks, 3.012 lectures and recitations do not meet. This lecture/lab alternating schedule proceeds throughout the term. In this way, students experimentally apply concepts from the fundamentals of structure, bonding, and thermodynamics while they are fresh in mind. In turn, the lab experience brings to light new ideas and questions to raise in lecture based on actual experiments that the students themselves have performed.

The UROP program was started by Dean Margaret MacVicar, a DMSE alumna.