Every online instructor has slightly different expectations for coursework, time commitment, student participation and the use of online tools. Understanding what is expected of you, grading policies, and how to participate in your course can reduce stress and improve online learning.
Once you have read your course syllabus, contact your instructor if you are still unsure as to his/her level of expectation. Email or online office hours are a great way to get your questions answered. Do not wait! Understanding your instructor's expectations before the start of the course will get you started on the right track.