Humanities 1110


Inver Hills Community College

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Hum 1110
D2L Discussion Questions/Prompts


This page contains questions or prompts that you are welcome to use as you write your messages on the Hum 1110 Discussion boards.


  Set “A” Readings Questions:

Choose any of these you wish to answer about the current and/or previous time period covered in our textbooks.  When you write, you may offer opinion, fact, or any mix of it, as long as you support what you argue.  Please be sure to write something substantially different from what you wrote in your weekly “Comments” papers for the chapters of our texts.  Be thoughtful, be controversial, compare/contrast, ask questions and try to answer your own, see what other people think of your ideas and/or feelings, etc.

SET A, CULTURE: Describe, step by step or part by part, how/why some of the special elements of culture during this time period have special interest to you or to our present culture: e.g., women’s roles, war, violence, home and hearth, travel, economics, religious practices, sexuality, etc.?

SET A, COMPARISON/CONTRAST: If you were to compare and/or contrast this week’s time period with another one (and/or with modern times), how would you do so, what results would you get, and why?

SET A, THE ARTS: If you were to pick one of the types of arts during this time period (music, visual art, sculpture, architecture, stage plays, literature, dance, etc.), how would you compare and/or contrast it with those of another time period, and why/how?

SET A, SYNTHESIS OF 2 PERIODS: How have two forms of beliefs, arts, or cultures synthesized or combined: how does this time period tie together—or create a new whole or new, combined movement or combined idea—with one before or after it, and/or with modern times, and why? 

SET A, GENERAL REACTIONS: Do not summarize what you read.  Do not write about or discuss the same thing you did in your “Comments” paper on the textbook readings, unless you do so in a much different way showing new thinking about the subject.  Do please describe your reactions to the reading: what did different points make you think of?  What did you feel about different aspects of the assignment?  If you had lived in those times/places, what would you most have liked and/or disliked?  What do you think was a central issue or focus for most people then?

SET A, PHILOSOPHY/RELIGION: What are one or more important philosophical or religious ideas that you see developing in this time period, and how/why are they important?  Don't just repeat what the text says: offer your own interpretations, feelings, etc., tying what you say into or back to that older period of time.


  Set “B” General-Discussion Questions:

As you answer the Set “B” question(s), you may offer opinion, fact, or any mix of it, as long as you support what you say.  Be thoughtful, be controversial, compare/contrast, ask questions and try to answer your own, see what other people think of your ideas and/or feelings, etc.

SET B, WEEK 1-B (First Week):

In Week 1-B, answer the question asked in the Week 1-B prompt: “How would you define 'humanities,' 'culture,' and/or 'civilization?'  (Hint: it may help you to read the introduction to one of the humanities textbooks first and/or to use a dictionary, Wikipedia, etc.) What do 'the humanities,' 'culture,' and/or 'civilization' mean to you (or feel like, or how do you participate in them) now, as you start this course?).”

If you haven’t reached 200+ w., yet, then you may also add some of the following: “What would you like to get out of this class or hope to learn? Why are you taking this class rather than another? What do you actually know about ancient, classical, medieval, and renaissance times? What do the humanities disciplines mean to you, why, and how; and which of the humanities do you like best, and why/how?”

At the end of the course, in Week 16-B, answer the question asked in the Week 16-B prompt.  


You may bring up any idea, topic, or experience you want that is related to the course subjects. However, here are some possible questions you are welcome to discuss, too:

 What is “culture”—what are a few definitions or meanings of it?  And what, in your opinion, are the stages, steps, or layers of acquiring culture through which most children and/or adults go as they continue to grow, and why/how?

Now that you’ve seen the humanities in action, please consider and discuss one or more of the following questions. 

How do you think individuals and societies as a whole study, learn, watch, and rediscover the humanities? 

Is study of the humanities, past and/or present, good or bad, and why/how?  A famous saying about history is that if we do not study it, we are condemned to repeat it. 

How/why might this statement tie in with studying the humanities?  What part or parts of the humanities from the past might need to be reawakened/restudied in our own times, and in what part(s) of the current world? 

Imagine that you were born in one of the historical times and places we have studied.  Choose an interesting role in that time and place.  Give a brief one- or two-sentence summary of who, what, when, and where you are.  Then describe your beliefs and why/how your believe them.

SET B, MUSEUM/PLAY VISITS (Four total, or two of reach):

What did you think of our first visit to a museum/play? 

What was the best part?  The worst? 

What did you get out of it?  What would you most like to remember? 

What are several ways in which what you saw and heard tie in with what we’ve been reading/discussing in class? 


How is class going for you, why/how do you think this is so, and what would you change about the course, if anything?  Do you have any questions that other people might be able to answer for you?

SET B, WEEKS 10-B and/or 14-B:

You may use the regular questions, above, or use any subject related to the course that you wish, you use one of the prompts below:

How would you now explain your overall understanding of the humanities using one or more of the following four overview methods?

If you could lay out the humanities like a visual map or a geographic place, what would your map/place look like?

If you were to create a piece of music or a sculpture representing the humanities as a subject, what would it sound or look/feel like?

If you were to describe learning the humanities as a series of steps, what steps would you develop or describe for others to follow?

 If you were to teach the humanities in high school, how would you do so and why?

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How does an online class have attendance?  Discussion boards are a big part of it (as are "events" mentioned on the "Attendance" page). D2L discussions count as attendance, just as would attending class on campus.

You will see, by the end of class, that roughly 2/3rds of people are left. Where did the other 1/3rd go? They either dropped out or were removed (after three wks.) because of no attendance and/or no weekly homework. Attendance is a large part of this class--1/3rd or more--and attending the D2L discussion boards is a large part of this.

Updated Aug. 2017



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