Relationship between Chess rating and I.Q?

  • #1

    Does anyone have information about any direct correlation between OTB rating and general intelligence? I vaguely recall British G.M Jonathan Levitt putting forward the notion that an I.Q of 120 indicates a person could, with sufficient work achieve a rating roughly = 2000 + [I.Q - 100] x 10

    Therefore, we can conclude that even a relatively weak G.M would have an I.Q above 140 while super GM's like Kasparov would be > 180.

    Those of us who have not yet reached 2000 should not despair. Levitt would tell us either to work at chess more often or change our method.

    Given the studies such as that cited at www.auschess.org.au/articles/chessmind.htm I am of the opinion that I.Q is not a genetic parameter like eye colour that is handed out at birth, but rather can be altered through one's environment. I think there are three groups of people...average of which I am unfortunately a member, the gifted and the handicapped.

    Any ideas or information on the subject is appreciated. 

  • #2
    Chess does not have that much of a direct correlation to IQ.  There should be no formula.
  • #3

    Thanks Killa. I'm guessing you believe your I.Q would suggest a much higher over the board rating when you suggest there should be no formula? Can you substantiate your claim? Does is seem logical to you that a person with a high degree of skill at an activity like 'chess' should also have transferable abilities into other areas? If not why not?

    Perhaps you 'know' people who have skill at chess but show little evidence of ability outside the 64 squares. I can easily think of such people...but wonder if they really apply themselves to non-chessic activity simply due to lack of interest?


  • #4

    I imagine that there is a correlation, but like many correlations of that type there are many exceptions to the general rule.

     

    For example, there is a proven correlation between educational achievement and income, but that's not to say there aren't a lot of people with little formal education who earn a lot, and a lot of highly educated people who earn relatively little.

     

    I'd say a similar thing is true for Chess rating vs. I.Q. In general the rule holds, but for any given individual you can't really say with any accuracy. I know I've met a lot of those exceptions!


  • #5
    I dont belevie in the formela.
  • #6
    You are right on the money Mr. Wizard.  I have a very high IQ, but my rating doesn't reflect your formula.  And I have put in decent time for chess.  I also agree with Chelex, which was kind of what I was trying to say.
  • #7

    skills such as pattern recognition, problem solving and memory are always high factors in I.Q. tests and those are obviously key to ones chess ability.  I think where most people get confused is with the misconception that ones I.Q. is static and written in stone so to speak... it is not.  just like chess ratings, I.Q. can be improved through practice and study.


  • #8

    I think that I.Q. and chess are related but in an off way. I think that it would depend on the type of intellegence you naturally have like spacial, logical/mathmatical, and so forth to depend if you are naturally good at chess. I also think though that chess skill can be acquired through much practice and effort.


  • #9
    if that were true then my IQ is already higher than your weak GM's, but my rating would say otherwise
  • #10
    Kasparov's IQ is bigger then einstein's (by the theory from above)
  • #11

    IQ is a terrible way of measuring intelligence. It was never intended to be some sort of general assessment of a persons combined cognitive capacity. The designer of the IQ-test specifically warned about this.

    I'm a bit allergic to these sorts of discussions. The only function they end up serving is that of a well articulated penis meausuring contest.


  • #12

    PMContest! Indeed :-) So what is chess? What is any competition/exam/sport etc? In answer to Kasparov v Einstein I cannot say. Bobby Fischer was tested in school and went off the scale at 184. I'm getting the impression that smart people [like boring309] who are not particularly strong players try to belittle those who play at a level they simply don't appreciate. This is another quirk of human nature that interests me...i.e that 'clever' people who are not 'clever' at some particular activity such as chess [in spite of years of practice] feel a need to demean 'skill at chess'.

    Why is this so? For those who have high I.Q's [like old redsox] but not so high chess ratings it is my observation that such people are usually convergent thinkers who are not good at the lateral thinking that is often required to play high level chess. Sure, chess relies on pattern recognition & visualisation to play sound tactics, but positional understanding and particularly reasoning become super-important in less tactical positions. I have a few friends in the same box as redsox...very smart but ratings < 1600! I hope I haven't offended anyone...I'm just interested in other players' perception of chess skill etc


  • #13
    I have been playing tournament chess since 1973 and have met many people that I believe are "smarter" than me but they couldnt beat me in chess. On the other hand, I have met chess players whom I couldnt beat that I dont think are as "smart" as me. A problem I have in this area though is how society defines "smart" people. Mant rural folks never go to college and some dont even finish high school and society looks down on these people. Society says a doctor or lawyer is "smarter" than a guy that lays brick and block or works as a plumber and their hobbies are usually hunting, fishing, camping etc. However, if the rural man and the city doctor suddenly found themselves ship wrecked and lost on some deserted island which do you think would survive?  Now, who is "smarter" ?  Laughing
  • #14

    I agree with Humble in #11.  At most, chess ability might correlate well with certain non-verbal subtests of intelligence tests, but not with general intellectual ability. 

    But even this is suspect because of "practice effects."  Practice effects are the tendency for a person to get better at something with each successive attempt.  Designers of intelligence tests seek to avoid practice effects by creating tasks that are novel for most persons taking the test.  This alone makes it highly unlikely that a designer would ever employ a chess scheme in an intelligence test.  And if they did, said performance would at best correlate well with the IQ of a person who has never played chess or is new to the game.  There would be a huge practice effect biasing the result for most consumers of chess.com.

     


  • #15

    well Mr Wizard...there may be something to the IQ correlation to chess rating. I do not think you could ever prove or disprove the theory though. One can become very good at chess through practice and studies but still have an average IQ where someone with a genius level or higher IQ may not have a strong enough interest in chess to apply themselves(or the time).

    I am a strong believer that anyone can learn anything given enough time but 

    in my experience those with higher IQ's tend to learn faster so that would give 

    them an advantage.

    I feel for the theory to be proved you would have to take into account their 

    time playing the game and the amount of studying they have done on it.

    This is an intersting theory though and I think there is some truth to it. 

    I might have to make some time to research it some. 


  • #16
    humble wrote:

    IQ is a terrible way of measuring intelligence. It was never intended to be some sort of general assessment of a persons combined cognitive capacity. The designer of the IQ-test specifically warned about this.

    I'm a bit allergic to these sorts of discussions. The only function they end up serving is that of a well articulated penis meausuring contest.


     I agree that using only the IQ test is a terrible way to measure inteligece. This is because in most people the IQ testing result depends on the studing and preparation. Putting together the IQ test with other test (people skills for example) can give you a result of a person ability to resolve problems, manage situations, etc.  So in some ways it measures what we nornally understand as "inteligence" in people.

    I think that the IQ and chess is related somehow. But if you hava an average IQ, with a lot of studing you can be better at chess.

     


  • #17

    It's funny how this is brought up every time someone mentions IQ. I don't think the thread starter ever claimed that IQ was a good way to completely map someones cognitive capacity.

     

    A high IQ implies good pattern recognition ability which is a very good thing to have when playing chess. I doubt you'll find a formula to convert chess rating to IQ and vice versa though. There are too many other factors. 


  • #18
    MrWizard wrote:

    Does anyone have information about any direct correlation between rating and general intelligence? I vaguely recall Britisg G.M Jonathan Levitt putting forward the notion that an I.Q of 120 indicates a person could, with sufficient work achieve a rating roughly = 2000 + [I.Q - 100] x 10

    Therefore, we can conclude that even a relatively weak G.M would have an I.Q above 140 while super GM's like Kasparov would be > 180.

    Those of us who have not yet reached 2000 should not despair. Levitt would tell us either to work at chess more often or change our method.

    Given the studies such as that cited at www.auschess.org.au/articles/chessmind.htm I am of the opinion that I.Q is not a genetic parameter like eye colour that is handed out at birth, but rather can be altered through one's environment. I think there are three groups of people...average of which I am unfortunately a member, the gifted and the handicapped.

    Any ideas or information on the subject is appreciated. 


    Do I seem I have hope of being 2420???? A GM!?!?!?!


  • #19
    that is not possible, maybe rateing has a little to do with IQ but it can't be so acturate that there is a formula for it, also i think we all know that Albert Einstien has a bigger IQ than Kasperov, wich proves the theory wrong, if the theory was rite i would be a relitively week GM.
  • #20

    hahaha. strong correlation between IQ and chess? not a chance, or at least not for everybody.

     so many other factors go into chess...


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