Evaluating Chess Progress  (Summary)

Evaluating Chess Progress (Summary)

Jan 7, 2016, 4:26 AM |


 Evaluating Chess Progress


   After all is said and done, progress in chess is 'measured' by 'ratings' (that is a numerical 'score') in several different areas.  The main ones we use in the C&O scholastic programs and clubs are the Chess.com “Daily Chess” (14-day time control) and “Live Chess – Rapid” (15|10 time control) ratings.  These may be found on each player’s home/profile page.

   “Daily” chess is modern "correspondence" chess designed to give players time to 'research' opening theory and basic tactics. Because players are permitted to use chess databases and the built-in 'analysis board,' they may learn about individual openings and move the pieces around before 'submitting' their move to an opponent.  Once established (20, or more, finished games) Daily Chess ratings are frequently two to three hundred points higher than "Live-Rapid" ratings.

Live “Rapid” is the Chess.com version of normal, 'over-the-board,' or OTB, chess.  It is played in real-time with an on-screen 'clock' limiting players’ overall time.  The "Rapid" designation on Chess.com indicates a time control of 15|10, or longer.  15|10 is the recommended control for our students. The first number (15) means 15 minutes (for each player) and the second number (10) is an 'increment,' in seconds, added to a player’s time after each move.  A 15 second increment would add 10 minutes to an 'average game' (40 moves).  This is our C&O 'club-rating.' Longer time controls are usually not necessary, while shorter limits are considered to be "Blitz" or "Bullet" speeds, not part of our "club ratings" (and not recommended for beginners).

Clicking on the 'listing' for each type of rating gives a more detailed breakdown of each. Since new players start with an 'estimated' average rating, it normally requires twenty, or more, rated games in each category before the rating is 'established' (meaningful).  Because a rating may change with each game played, ratings should not be tracked on a 'daily' basis but over a 10 or 20-game (or 30 day) period. The more games played, the more accurate the rating, but even established ratings have a “plus or minus” factor of 25 to 50 points for beginners.

You will notice that Chess.com also rates 'Live Chess - Blitz' games (10 minutes, or less), 'Chess960,'  Tactics problems, and others. Feel free to try these but put your emphasis on your “Daily” and “Rapid” ratings.

Check out other posts for more ways to improve your chess.