Knowing yourself and your learning preferences.
If you learn best by hearing your instructor lecture and vocally describe assignments, you may need to find some strategies to accommodate this learning preference. Identifying this need is an important step so you can address it before you get frustrated and fall behind, or worse - drop out. We all have different approaches to how we best learn. Begin by identifying yours.
Begin with VARK: A Guide to Learning Styles. This inventory will provide you with some useful information and a few strategies for self-accommodations.
You might also look at any of the following:
Online Assessment System for Internet Students
At the following site you'll find a comprehensive self-assessment tool. Step 1 addresses Study skills, step 2 addresses learning styles, and step 3 provides some very useful tutorials. You can create your own personal profile and gain access to the site and your scores upon returning, or you can log-in as a guest providing any name and email address that you wish. Selecting "Guest" will provide your results for the active session only. You may want to take some notes as you go through the tutorial.
Index of Learning Styles (Be sure to look for the link to the ILS questionnaire.)
So, what are some of the essential skills for success in taking an online course?
The following pages are loaded with valuable suggestions: