FA 150 01: Introduction to the Fine Arts

FA 150 - Introduction to the Fine Arts

2023 Summer Syllabus, Section 01, CRN 5679

Course Information

You are responsible for knowing this material, so please read carefully. Any changes will be announced in a Blackboard Announcement. You will be responsible for any changes. Your continued enrollment in this course is your implicit agreement to abide by the requirements of this class.

Instructor Information

Dr. Whitney Mayo

Email: whitney.mayo@und.edu

Office: HFAC 216

2023 Summer Office Hours:
By appointment (email to schedule)

Office Phone: 7017772728

Cell Phone: 2543177561

Cell for emergencies

Course Description

Introduction to the fundamental principles of the Fine Arts -- Visual Arts, Music, Theatre, and Dance -- followed by examples of the interaction of the arts in selected cultures from history and around the world and at a variety of campus arts events, in order to increase appreciation of the importance of the fine arts to the individual and community.

Learning Outcomes

This course is designed to introduce you to the fine arts and how they interact with humanity. You will explore art, music, theater, and dance, and look for connections to your life and the world around you. After successfully completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Build an understanding of basic concepts and terminology for art, music, theater, and dance, and use these concepts and terms appropriately.
  • Describe, interpret, and evaluates arts in several ways, including making informed personal choices in the arts over a broad range of forms.
  • Develop an understanding of how the arts interact with other areas, including culture, religion, politics, and economics, throughout history, and draw connections to how these areas affect the arts.

Course Materials

Janero, R. P., & Altshuler, T. (2016). The art of being human: The humanities as a technique for living (11th ed.). Pearson.

This is an eText using the Peason/REVEL platform.

To join our course, you must use the Blackboard link to Pearson. There is no instructor code to sync the platform to our course. Be sure to use the Open Pearson link located in the Textbook folder on Blackboard.

Technical Requirements/Assistance

You will use Microsoft Word to complete assignments (files created using Pages in Apple can be saved as a Word file before submitting). Students are expected to use their official UND email in the course. Visit the Office 365 Email webpage for information on your UND email and how to download/install a free version of Microsoft Office. For technical assistance, please contact UND Technical Support at 701.777.2222. Visit the University Information Technologies (UIT) website for their hours, help documents and other resources.

You will use Pearson's REVEL platform for all readings and quizzes. Please see the technical handout for REVEL for additional information on how to connect and access this platform through Blackboard.

Minimum Technical Skills Needed

In order to succeed in this course, at a minimum, you should be able to:

  • Navigate in and use basic Blackboard functions
  • Access readings through REVEL
  • Download and open electronic documents
  • Create, save, and upload/attach electronic documents
  • Send, receive, and manage email

Visit the Knowledge Base for additional supports and information about general tech requirements for students including information about devices, operating systems, software, internet connection, and major-specific tech requirements.

Course Logistics

Access and Log in Information

This course was developed and will be facilitated utilizing Blackboard. To get started with the course, please go to: http://blackboard.UND.edu and log in with your NDUS.Identifier, Username and Password. If you do not know your NDUS Identifier or have forgotten your password, please visit Your NDUS Account page on the UIT website.

Course Overview

The course content is organized into 12 weeks for the semester. Each week contains readings, checks for understanding, and assignments designed to help students engage with the fine arts. Weeks are grouped into modules culminating with exams designed to assess comprehension and application of the materials.

What Should Students Do First?

Before class begins, please review the course Blackboard site, ensure you have read the syllabus and acquire your textbook, including access to the Revel platform. Familiarize yourself with Revel and Blackboard. Download the course calendar and set deadlines/reminders for due dates.

Where Do I Find Information in Blackboard?

On the left side course menu in Blackboard, there is a “Weekly Folders” tab. Inside “Weekly Folders,” you will find all the learning objectives, to-do list, required readings, videos, and assignments/activities for the week. A course calendar for each week can be found on Blackboard under the Syllabus and Schedule tab.


Many services are available to UND students such as writing assistance from the UND Writing Center, free online tutoring from Smarthinking, and more. Visit the Student Resources page for more information. Students also have access to the UND Student Resource Site via Blackboard. It is recommended that you become familiar with the tools and tutorials within the site to better equip you in navigating the course.

Course Requirements/Expectations

To be successful in this course:

  1. The student will review the syllabus and course schedule posted on Blackboard.
  2. The student will access and follow all course instructions found in the Blackboard course.
  3. The student will complete all assigned readings, and complete and submit assignments, exams, quizzes, etc., by the date noted in Blackboard and on the course schedule. We will use Central Daylight Time for due dates and times.
  4. The student will participate fully and promptly to get the benefit of learning from the instructor and/or peers.
  5. The student will communicate any questions or issues with the instructor promptly via email.

Credit Load

This 100-level course carries a 3-hour credit load. As such, students should expect to spend at least 6 hours each week preparing, which includes reading, practicing, studying, and completing assignments. Some weeks will require more time outside of class than others, and actual time spent may vary depending on previous experience and knowledge.


Always use professional language (no netspeak) in your assignments and emails. Please always be respectful of others, even if you disagree with their ideas or do not get along. Here are a few basic points to remember when communicating in this course:

  • Be scholarly. Use proper language, grammar, and spelling. Explain your thoughts, justify opinions, and credit the ideas of others by citing or linking to scholarly resources. Avoid misinforming others when you are unsure of the answer.  When discussing something and supplying a guess, clearly state that.
  • Be respectful. Respect the privacy of others. Do not share personal or professional information about others unless granted permission. Respect diversity and opinions that differ from their own. Be tactful when you communicate.
  • Be professional. Everyone should strive to give their best impression online. Truthfulness, accuracy, and running a final spell check are appropriate expectations for university students. Writing in a legible font and limiting the use of emoticons is considered professional behavior. Profanity and participation in hostile interactions are unprofessional as well as disruptive.
  • Be polite. Students should address professors and instructors by the appropriate title or requested name. Students should interact online politely, just as they would be expected to do in a physical environment. Sarcasm, rudeness, and writing in all capital letters should be avoided.

For more information, read the Top 12 Be-Attitudes of Netiquette for Academicians.


Because our course is an online asynchronous format, our primary mode of communication will be email. Students are expected to check their UND emails daily (excluding weekends) and should promptly respond to class-related emails. Professional communication is expected (no netspeak or text-like communication).

As the instructor, I will also check my email frequently and work to respond within one-two business days. Please note that I will only check/respond to emails before 8 pm CST during the week and may not respond during weekends. I will share assignment feedback via email within one week following the assignment and will communicate when those timelines may be varied due to holidays, conference travel, or other circumstances.


Many resources will be available on Blackboard. All assignments will be submitted via Blackboard. Download and review materials. Announcements may also be made via Blackboard and email. Please make sure you have easy access to this and check it regularly.

Technology and Video Conferencing

We are all challenged these days by the ways in which our digital devices—including laptops, tablets, phones, and watches—can steal our attention away from our immediate surroundings. Technology should be used for educational purposes only when working on course activities. All video recordings used in this class are for class purposes only and may not be shared outside of class for any reason.

For individual appointments, we will utilize Zoom. When interacting with peers or instructors online or through video conferencing, it is important to consider your environment and interact professionally. Students should follow the Code of Student Life while interacting virtually or in person.

Sharing personal experiences and opinions is an important part of the learning process. Please respect the privacy of your peers by not sharing their personal experiences outside of our class context.

Assessment Summary

This course is comprised of a series of assignments and assessments to assist you in achieving the course learning objectives/outcomes.


In this course, your learning will be assessed in the following ways:

  • Weekly Assignments (120 pts)
  • Attendance Reports (100 pts)
  • Quizzes (160 pts)
  • Exams (300 pts)

Weekly Assignments

Each week, you will have a short task(s) to engage your understanding of the readings and course material. These activities will be posted to Blackboard with specific instructions for completion. Each weekly activity is worth 10 points and is due by Friday at 11:30 pm CST.

Attendance Reports

You will complete two reports based on novel fine arts experiences: one visual art and one musical experience. For these reports, you will need to attend an event that is new to you (e.g., if you are familiar with classical music performances, you would need to attend something else). Complete descriptions for these reports will be posted to Blackboard. Formal writing guidelines should be followed. Your work should be free of grammatical errors, misspellings, run-on sentences, contractions, etc. Each report is worth 50 points.

Prior to attending an event, you should email Dr. Mayo for approval to ensure your event meets the criteria for the report. The report should then be completed and submitted no more than 72 hours after the event so it is fresh in your mind. Report deadlines are posted on Blackboard and will not be extended without prior communication.


For each chapter of the text, you will have a brief quiz designed to check your understanding of the material. These quizzes will be housed on REVEL. Each quiz is worth 10 points and will be due by Friday at 11:30 pm CST on the week the chapter was assigned.


There will be four (4) exams throughout the semester. These exams are designed to assess your summative understanding of course materials. The exams will have a 90-minute time limit. During the exam, you are welcome to use your notes and materials. However, you will not have time to look up all the exam information. Take notes and understand the material well. Each exam is worth 75 points. Review the course calendar for exam dates. Please note these exams cannot be taken late.

Grading Scale

A       612-680 pts

B       544-611 pts

C       476-543 pts

D       408-475 pts

F    below 407 pts

For more information on grading review UND Grading Policies.


Course Evaluation

Near the end of the semester, you will be asked to complete an online course evaluation form (SELFI). Your feedback on the course is extremely valuable to me. I read my students’ comments carefully and use them to improve the course the next time I teach it.

  • When the time comes, please let me know which aspects of the course helped you learn—and which aspects might be modified to help future students learn more effectively. 
  • Please note that the course evaluations are anonymous and that I won’t see the results until after the grades for the course are submitted, allowing you to provide honest and constructive feedback. 
  • Throughout the semester if you have concerns or feedback, please reach out to schedule a time to discuss

Course Policies

Assignments and Late Work Policy

Due dates for each assignment or activity will be posted on Blackboard and within the course calendar. All assignments must be submitted by the due date and time posted in the course. All times are posted in the Central Time Zone. All assignments will be open on Blackboard so you are welcome to work ahead of deadlines. Please plan accordingly for summer events.

The acceptance of late assignments is at the discretion of the instructor. If extenuating circumstances arise, it is your responsibility to you contact the instructor prior the due date and request an extension. All requirements for this course must be completed during the course dates.

Class Participation

Your participation with course materials and assignments is critical to your success in this course. All students are required to log in to Blackboard regularly. Read and engage with the assigned chapters, complete assignments thoroughly, and ask questions when you have them.


It is expected that students will complete all course requirements during the course's time frame. For reasons beyond a student’s control, and upon request by the student or on behalf of the student, the instructor may assign an incomplete grade when there is reasonable certainty the student will successfully complete the course without retaking it. The mark “I,” Incomplete, will be assigned only to the student who has been in attendance and has done satisfactory work up to a time within four weeks of the close of the semester, including the examination period, and whose work is incomplete for reasons satisfactory to his or her instructor. More information regarding UND’s Incomplete policy can be found on The Grading System Webpage.

University of North Dakota Policies & Resources

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a serious matter, and any deviations from appropriate behavior will be dealt with strongly. At the discretion of the professor, situations of concern may be dealt with as a scholastic matter or a disciplinary matter.

As a scholastic matter, the professor has the discretion to determine appropriate penalties for the student’s workload or grade, but the situation may be resolved without involving many individuals. An alternative is to treat the situation as a disciplinary matter, which can result in suspension from the University, or have lesser penalties. Be aware that I view this as a very serious matter and will have little tolerance and/or sympathy for questionable practices. A student who attempts to obtain credit for work that is not their own (whether that be on a paper, quiz, homework assignment, exam, etc.) will likely receive a failing grade for that item of work, and at the professor’s discretion, may also receive a failing grade in the course. For more information read the Code of Student Life.

Access and Opportunity, Disability Support, & Medical Services

The University of North Dakota is committed to providing equal access to students with documented disabilities. To ensure access to this class and your program, please contact Disability Services for Students (DSS) to engage in a confidential discussion about accommodations for the classroom and clinical settings. Accommodations are not provided retroactively. Students are encouraged to register with DSS at the start of their program. More information can be obtained by email UND.dss@UND.edu or by phone at 701.777.2664.


UND is committed to maintaining a safe learning environment while providing quality learning experiences for our students. COVID-19’s continued presence within our UND community may necessitate changes in classroom management as the academic year progresses. As such, UND asks students and instructors to be flexible when necessary to promote a safe environment for learning. Please do not attend an in-person class or lab if you are feeling ill, particularly if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, or if you have been directed by health professionals to quarantine or isolate. If you are not able to attend class or lab, please notify your instructor as soon as possible and discuss options for making up any missed work in order to ensure your ability to succeed in the course. If you will have an extended absence due to serious illness or other uncontrollable circumstances, you may request an absence notification through the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities. Similarly, if your instructor is ill they may need to cancel class or temporarily move your course to online delivery to ensure that you are able to complete the course successfully.  Instructors may require students to wear masks in the classroom or in the laboratory as a preventative measure designed to facilitate uninterrupted classroom engagement and to facilitate health and safety in the classroom.   If your instructor does require masks in class or in a laboratory, you are expected to comply with that request.

UND also strongly encourages all members of the University community, including students, to get vaccinated, seek out testing when needed, and model positive behavior both on- and off-campus to foster a healthy and safe learning environment for all students. Individuals who would like to discuss disability accommodations regarding masks should contact the Disability Services for Students (DSS) office at 701.777.2664 or UND.dss@UND.edu. Individuals who are unable to wear a mask due to a sincerely held religious belief should contact the UND Equal Opportunity and Title IX Office at 701.777.4171 or UND.EO.TitleIX@UND.edu.

Religious Accommodations

UND offers religious accommodations, which are reasonable changes in the academic environment that enable a student to practice or observe a sincerely held religious belief without undue hardship on the University. Examples include time for prayer or the ability to attend religious events or observe a religious holiday. To request an accommodation, complete the student religious accommodation request form. If you have any questions, you may contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX Office.

Pregnancy Accommodations

Students who need assistance with academic adjustments related to pregnancy or childbirth may contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX Office or Academic Affairs to learn about your options. Additional information and services may be found at Pregnancy Resources.

Notice of Nondiscrimination

It is the policy of the University of North Dakota that no person shall be discriminated against because of race, religion, age, color, gender, disability, national origin, creed, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, veteran’s status, or political belief or affiliation and the equal opportunity and access to facilities shall be available to all. Concerns regarding Title IX, Title VI, Title VII, ADA, and Section 504 may be addressed to Donna Smith, Assistant Vice President for Equal Opportunity & Title IX and Title IX/ADA Coordinator, 102 Twamley Hall, 701.777.4171, UND.EO.TitleIX@UND.edu or the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Dept. of Education, 230 S. Dearborn St., 37th Floor, Chicago, IL 60604 or any other federal agency.

Reporting of Discrimination, Harassment, or Sexual Misconduct

If you or a friend has experienced sexual misconduct, such as sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking, please contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX Office or UND’s Title IX Coordinator, Donna Smith, for assistance: 701.777.4171; donna.smith@UND.edu; or visit the Title IX webpage. You may also contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX office if you or a friend has experienced discrimination or harassment based on a protected class, such as race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, pregnancy, marital or parental status, veteran's status, or political belief or affiliation.

Faculty Reporting Obligations Regarding Discrimination, Harassment, or Sexual Misconduct

It is important for students to understand that faculty are required to share with UND’s Title IX Coordinator any incidents of sexual misconduct or of discrimination or harassment based on a protected class that they become aware of, even if those incidents occurred in the past or are disclosed as part of a class assignment. This does not mean an investigation will occur if the student does not want that, but it does allow UND to provide resources to help the student continue to be successful at UND. If you have been impacted by discrimination, harassment, or sexual misconduct, you can find information about confidential support services on the Equal Opportunity & Title IX webpage..

UND Cares Program

How to Seek Help When in Distress

We know that while college is a wonderful time for most students, however, some students may struggle or have issues that arise. You may experience students in distress on campus, in your classroom, in your home, and within residence halls. Distressed students may initially seek assistance from faculty, staff members, their parents, and other students. In addition to the support we can provide to each other, there are also professional support services available to students through the Dean of Students and University Counseling Center. Both staffs are available to consult with you about getting help or providing a friend with the help that he or she may need. For more additional information, please visit the UND Cares Program Webpage.

How to Recognize When a Student is in Distress

The term “distressed” can mean any of the following:

  • Student has significant changes in eating, sleeping, grooming, spending, or other daily activities.
  • Student has cut off or minimized contact with family or friends.
  • Student has significant changes in performance or involvement in academics, sports, extracurricular, or social activities.
  • Student describes problems (missing class, not remembering, destructive behavior) that result from experiences with drinking or drugs.
  • Student is acting withdrawn, volatile, tearful, etc.
  • Student is acting out of character or different than usual.
  • Student is talking explicitly about hopelessness or suicide.
  • Student has difficulty concentrating or difficulty carrying on a normal conversation.
  • Student has excessive dependence on others for company or support.
  • Student reports feeling out of control of one’s emotions, thoughts, or behaviors.

Land Acknowledgement Statement

Today, the University of North Dakota rests on the ancestral lands of the Pembina and Red Lake Bands of Ojibwe and the Dakota Oyate - presently existing as composite parts of the Red Lake, Turtle Mountain, White Earth Bands, and the Dakota Tribes of Minnesota and North Dakota. We acknowledge the people who resided here for generations and recognize that the spirit of the Ojibwe and Oyate people permeate this land. As a university community, we will continue to build upon our relations with the First Nations of the State of North Dakota - the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation, Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Nation, Spirit Lake Nation, Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, and Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians.

Additional Resources

It is my goal to foster an environment of mutual respect in which everyone feels comfortable voicing their opinions, sharing their stories, and learning about potentially heavy or personally relevant material. If, at any point, you feel like the information covered in this class elicits thoughts, feelings, or concerns that you would like to discuss further, don’t hesitate to reach out to me, or the UND Counseling Center (701-777-2127).

Further, if you experience extenuating circumstances, sexual violence, identity-based harm, or any other personal crisis during the semester, don’t hesitate to reach out to me so we can provide academic assistance and help you in this course, and put you in contact with the appropriate resources and services (if needed).