By: Claire Wilson. Last Updated: January 2024


An online course is obviously different to studying in a classroom environment.

There won’t be someone stood in the room with you, making sure you sit down and complete your planned study session. You won’t have a set timetable that’s fixed and cannot be altered. You won’t be sitting within a few meters of all your classmates.

What online learning offers is flexibility – and that’s not to be underestimated. You can study online, at a time to suit you, fitting it in around the other commitments of your life.

But we know that some people can be concerned about what an online course actually involves and whether they’d be any good at it. So here are the top 5 personality traits we think are important to being successful at online study.

(This isn’t to say that you have to have all these traits before you start. You just have to be aware of the skills you’ll probably need to develop to be successful and be willing to work on improving them if they’re not skills you currently have.)

Organisational skills – with no set timetable or class schedule, you need to allocate and protect the time you need for study. The materials are available 24/7 and you are free to complete them at a time that suits you in the week but you still have to actually make the time to get it done.

Good self-motivation – when other things come up, you need to be able to keep your priorities. While you’re in this process, you have to make it a priority. Whether you’re here to finally get a degree or start a brand new career, you need to be able to remind yourself of that when your initial enthusiasm wears off.

Being proactive – you need to reach out if you’re struggling. There’s not someone standing at the front of the room and watching you complete your tasks.

There is a course advisor who will be there to answer any and all questions you have, it’s just a case of reaching out (and doing so before you get too disheartened).

Your activity logs will also be checked weekly so we can (and will!) spot if you’re falling behind. In that case, we’ll reach out to discuss your current situation.

Using Initiative – this is not a course for fresh graduates and, as such, we expect students to be able to take initiative and do basic things like google search a term they’re confused about.

Confidence – you have to believe that you can do this. A mid-career change can be a daunting thing at times so you have to be able to keep yourself “in check” about any passing doubts as they arise.

The key thing to remember is that you’re never on your own when you’re taking one of our classes. You will have a designated course coordinator who will be with you every step of the way. Whether your query is technical, about the course content or just a moment of self-doubt, they will always be there to answer it for you.

About the Author

Image with Claire Wilison from GetReskilled Team

Claire Wilson

Content Marketing and Career Coaching

Claire runs GetReskilled’s Advanced Career Coaching Programme – our specially devised job hunting course that helps our trainees take that final step into employment by leading them through the job hunting process. She is extremely enthusiastic about helping people reach their final goal of employment in their new career path.

Claire has a BSc (Hons) in Medical Biology from Edinburgh University and spent 7 years working in the pharmaceutical and medical device industries.