Okay, now for the mundane and difficult YET perhaps THE MOST IMPORTANT component to your success in online distance learning:
First, create a plan tailored for you. It will include: the best times when you are fresh and alert, enjoy plunking type on a computer, less distracted and when you are not competing with wanting time away (for instance, to play outside- yes, I said play which we all need even as adults; rather be fishing or whatever...).
Second, map out a calendar with a schedule of times devoted to study, typing, research, etc. Create a pattern to your weekly study time. Oh yes, turn off your phone, pager and/or cell phone.
Third, let your family and friends know that you are taking an online course and your weekly study times. This is most important! So when they call during your study time you can, without guilt say, "I'll have to get back to you. I am studying right now."
Fourth, create a place to study. Some like one solitary place that becomes like a security blanket for study. Others, like myself, may have a number of places we go to get things done. I have 4-5 coffee shops where I can tune out every distraction. They are my offices. Or perhaps you enjoy a library or public place where most gathered there are settled into a quiet but productive time of reading, writing or contemplation.
All of the above helps you create a Study SPACE or a Study ZONE that is suited just for you!