The University of California-Berkeley is a trial ground, and sometimes the trials begin as early as the summer, before they put foot on campus.
This summer, the university's College of Letters and Science, dwelling to three quarters of Berkeley's 25,000 students, will ask freshmen and moves to give back a cotton swab covered in cells gathered from their inner cheeks in an endeavor to make them acquainted with the growing field of personalized medicine.
Like a lot of other institutes, the college generally asks pupils to read a particular book or watch an assigned film in the weeks, before the classes commence, to update debate during orientation and all through the fall.
But a reading job did not seem right for something as progressive and personalized as genetic scrutiny.
Alix Schwartz, Director of Academic Planning for the College's Undergraduate Division, said, that science is moving very fast at present.
He said, "If we assigned them a book, it would be out-of-date by the time they read it".
Last year's task for the course, dubbed "On the Same Page", was Michael Pollan's description of food chains, The Omnivore's Dilemma.
Mark Schlissel, the College's Dean of Biological Sciences said that this year, a glance at personalized drugs seems sensible.