Chess - Play & Learn


FREE - In Google Play

FREE - in Win Phone Store


Relationship between Chess rating and I.Q?

  • #101

    I think a bunch of self congratulatory GMish players got together, and published their formula here....


    Arogant bunch is my verdict.   I wonder if someone really did have a very high IQ - doubtless they'd play reasonably well - but would they really dedicate their time and effort to it?

    I think those that are really good  - I mean the true elite - are generally driven, obsessive people, who need to prove their intelegence in a combative way, (hence vastly more male top players) which suggests to me they are fundamentally insecure.  I recognise some of that motivation in myself, but I like to play, and don't mind loosing, but I'm certainly not going to spend ages going through games, and reading opening theory - it's just a passtime / game after all.

  • #102

    LisaV, Did you completely ignore what I wrote or just misunderstand on purpose? What I was complaining on wasn't that you used exactly 1%, it was that your point is wrong. The standard deviations are already counted into a real IQ test (not one of the silly online quizes). It is already calculated into the result for a reason, so that you can compare the score of two different tests. Wich means that you're not going to score 135 IQ on one test and 190 on another. The IQ-scale is a way to score how well a person do on the test compared to other people in the same group wich means that it is impossible for 1% of a test group to score 190 on a test since the definition of 190 on the IQ-scale is that you score among the top 0,001% (not sure about the exact number). So what you are saying is that 1% of the people doing a certain test might score among the top 0,001% of the people doing the test, I hope you realise how silly that sounds. Just read up on what a IQ test is and you'll see my point. Also some people claim that IQ relates to intelligence some claim it doesn't, either way that's beyond the scope of a IQ test so saying that IQ tests are flawed because they might not really measure intelligence is like saying that turtles are worthless because they can't climb trees.



    MrWizard, I like your attitude, everyone that disagree with you are not understanding you. That's quite some ego you got there, you know there is a possibility that people might understand your point but still disagree with you. For the pattern recognition you've claimed in several posts that it relates to memory and that's simply wrong. I guess you didn't bother to look up what it is after all. Also it's funny that you can see that I misunderstood your original question from my post seeing as I didn't touch that subject. I just tried to correct you on your ideas of pattern recognition since you seem to think pattern recognition equals memorized patterns.


  • #103
    My 2cents
         I have heard of studies where verbal ability correlated better with the ability to play chess well.  Not just knowledge but being able to compose.   I have an IQ of 159 and am really only a mediocre player.  I have a cousin whose IQ is 165. He whips me regularly, but he also is a way better writer than I am.  My son who is 17 is remarkably smarter than my daughter of 13 but cannot beat her 1 out of 8 games.  Again his grammar skills stink but my daughter makes A's in pre-AP Literature (AP=advanced placement applicable to middle school). I don't remember where I saw the study but it just clicked when I read it.

  • #104

    Have their been studies on correlation between tennis ability and I.Q. (sp. women's tennis - or else factoring for speed [of serve etc] ? I mean the part which is not speed needs significant intelligence, I think.

    btw I do *not* believe I. Q. has a high correlation with intelligence. I do not try to quantify intelligence, so this statement as it stands is perhaps not statistically refutable or confirmable - but maybe it is - you ask the person's peers how intelligent they consider the person to be, on a scale of 1 to 10. Tell the peers before polling that you are not talking about I. Q. - they should interpret intelligence as they see it [eg when they use the term *intelligent* in "s/he is quite intelligent"].


  • #105

    LisaV, What you're thinking about is the spread of the devation. There are two that's actually used. This wouldn't motivate a change from 135 on one test to 190 on another and it doesn't in any way make every unique IQ test uncomparable.


    As for Mr Wizards posts. Maybe you should look back at his older posts before you comment (same for mr wizard himself since he seems to have forgotten what he wrote).


    and finally for everyone that feel the need to tell 'their' IQ in this thread. The average IQ in threads like these usually land on around 150-180, but pleae keep it up.


  • #106
    I will be honest, I have been in a place where IQ is lacking... Most would know it as jail or prison. I will tell you first hand that given enough time (which is all they have) and practice, even somebody without the capacity to excel at other real world things can be quite good at chess. Believe what you will.  I for one say that there may be a connection to the ability to learn and master chess qwickly. But not a link to learned skill.
  • #107

    CowboyNoel wrote: My 2cents     I have heard of studies where verbal ability correlated better with the ability to play chess well. 
    You sayin cuz I aint no english major I can't play chess no how neither?  ;)

    Interesting thought.  I can see some analogies now that you mention it.  There is nearly an infinite variety of word sequences that might be used.  There's sort of a tactical and strategic nature to composition.  There's also the ideas of efficiency and tempo. 

    I think the question generally of what tallents and skills apply well to chess is an interesting one.  (I understand, the OP was asking specifically about IQ.)

    I think that given a reasonable degree of strength in the rest of the skills required, photographic memory would be a big differentiator.   If you can see and compose right in your head, that has got to help.  Me, I have a flash memory that lasts about 5 seconds.  I definitely have to compensate with practice practice study study.

  • #108
    MrWizard wrote:

    Thank you LisaV, Locke and a number of others who actually understand what the question is asking. As Neneko is a highly-rated player from Sweden he is excused for totally misunderstanding the question, and totally misunderstanding my attitude to 'pattern recognition' [PR]in chess. [My understanding of Swedish  = 0 ]PR obviously has a large part to play in quickly spotting tactics. The idea that chess is 99% tactics was originally just a way of expressing the idea that without tactical ability, a person cannot play a decent game of chess. However, there are many areas of intelligence called upon to play high level chess, not just 'PR' as some would have us believe.


     I was in direct conflict with LisaV, actually. I support Neneko's position. (Neneko is a "she".)
    Pattern recognition constitues almost the entirety of chess. As you stated, tactics are an important part of chess, and pattern recognition aids this, but what are positions other than recurring patterns? IQ, which measures pattern recognition, and not true intelligence, thus creates a pattern between potential rating and IQ which you seem unable to detect.

    As for the "many areas of intelligence", your causality is faulty. One of the main processes most aptitudes rely upon is pattern recognition.

  • #109


    Neneko :-) The following is a response to your post which relates to me...   Perhaps you should have expressed your own thoughts about pattern recognition rather than guess whether or not I know the subject. My understanding of pattern recognition in chess centres on a chessplayer's memory of different structures. A structure could be a 'back rank mate', Bishop sacrifice on h7, g7 or f7, every two-move combination you can think of...even strategic ideas can be regarded as patterns...a pawn-storm on opposite wings, an IQP, need for queenside expansion, a blockade, an outpost for a knight, a line opening sacrifice etc etc So much for "Patterns". The "Recognition" surely pertains to one's "memory" of the many patterns alluded to above...

    Chess is littered with far more examples than I want to list. Unlike many of the people who have 'disagreed' with my original post, you show a strong intellect[many really didn't understand the topic at all, which was indicated by comparing their own weak rating with self-proclaimed sky-high I.Q - which was usually laughable from their poor standard of sentence structure & content]. I thought it quite possible that English might not be your strong point as you claim to be Swedish.

    Perhaps you could write a brief article on your perception of pattern recognition so that the readers can be enlightened, assuming that I am not in agreement with you from my passage above? If we are in agreement, I accept your apology for misunderstanding me as I indicated.

    If you read all of my contributions to the thread, I have usually tried to bring the responses back toward answering the topic, as far too many people have concluded that I am equating lowish ratings [say < 1800] with a low I.Q! Of course it depends on whether a person actually applies themself to the task of improvement to the full extent of one's potential...and hardly any of us have that opportunity. It should be self-evident to all...but sadly is not.

    Finally...it would be nice to know where you stand on the topic I raised at the very beginning! Please feel free to read my other responses to people who have wandered off on their own tangents...all very stimulating :-) 

  • #110

    MrWizard, I already made my point about the question at hand earlier in the thread. I just came back to correct some blatant mistakes by you and LisaV. If you had looked up pattern recognition as I asked you'd know that it's not related to memory at all. It's actually one of the things that's tested in a IQ test.


    About writing an article about pattern recognition in chess. I'm writing exactly that for another site at the moment. It's a project I've been working on a while. I might post it here on this site too but probably not as a reply to this thread. That is if I ever finish it, I havn't found much time for it lately.

  • #111

    Hi again Neneko :-)

    I'm basing my use of the term 'pattern recognition' on what I have read in one or two chess-books, nothing else. I'm aware of the old spatial-perception tests used in I.Q testing...geometic shapes with bits missing or composing a shape from several building blocks...

    You didn't bother to point out my 'blatant mistakes' other than to suggest I either read your earlier posts or google 'pattern recognition'. Surely we are talking about pattern recognition "as it applies to chess"...not some psych definition...which might be more appropriately termed 'spatial perception'? 

    From my own experience, I am sure I apply more reasoning to my move selection process than pattern recognition as I developed a 'method' long ago which requires me to answer a few questions about direct threats and possible future threats to pieces in order to determine a number of possible moves to play.  It's so simple even a child can use the method and play quite well.

    I'd be very interested to read your thesis or whatever it is...and will read your other posts when I get a chance.

    All the best

  • #112
    Mr.Wizard, outside of the context of the debate, does it not seem condescending to repeatedly apply the epithet of "not being good at English" to Neneko, whilst all she has done is contradict you? I, for one, find her opinings much more perspicuous than either yours or LisaV's. Language is not a large obstacle when reciprocal logic is fallacious.
  • #113

    MrWizard, Pattern recognition is simply the ability to recognize patterns, not memorize them but simply to see them. IQ tests test this ability, I'd even go as far as saying that IQ test mainly test this ability. Your use of pattern recognition as if it was equal to memorizing positions is the mistake I pointed out along with LisaVs weird post about IQ tests.


    I'm not familliar with the term spatial perception but this is what I'm refering to when I say pattern recognition



    As for the subject at hand if you didn't find my other post. I think the whole thing is a bit silly. Besides that the formula seems to be taken from thin air there are too many factors that play a role in chess skill for you to be able to directly correlate IQ to chess rating. I defently think that a person with a higher IQ got a better potential at chess but it's also a fact that people with higher IQ generally make more money, that doesn't mean that you can look at a persons paycheck and tell his IQ or vice versa. Besides all that the formula comes with a few statements about it wich makes it impossible to disprove and I'm always sceptical to things like that.

  • #114

    My father once saw a microcephalus beat two exelent chess players. So there, chess skill is determined by numerous factors, intelligence might help, but it isnt all

  • #115

    I.Q. tests are notoriously flawed. I hold no stock in them. That said, if you do decide to trust to them, I think it would still be obvious that there can be no close relation between chess aptitude and an I.Q. score. Others here have already noted reasons why.


    BTW. My supposed I.Q. is borderline genius, and I'm struggling to keep my rating here in the 1400's. :)

  • #116

    Locke...please get your facts straight...I offered the possibility that your friend 'neneko' might not have understood my answer based on the fact that English isn't her native language...she has demonstrated excellent communication through the thread, happy now :-)

    All these people who claim to be 'borderline genius' but have trouble holding 1400...what are you suggesting...that skill at chess is inversely proportional to intelligence?? That it has no connection with intelligence?? What are you trying to say Mr.Genius [and all the rest of the genii gathered here!]?

    Isn't it obvious that intelligence would be very useful in any activity requiring thought?? Early in the thread I proposed that that the self-proclaimed intellectuals with low ratings need to work harder on their chess. It's becoming really irritating to read that the game that I love is diminished by stupid opinions about high chess skill not requiring high intelligence...and therefore a high I.Q

    If people out there have had a bad experience doing an I.Q test...then I am sorry for them...perhaps it was one of the few that may have been poorly created. I think the academics generally do a good job in any of their chosen fields...while the layperson is ever-ready to cut them down...ignorance is strength...

    Gotta go...dinner is ready :-)

  • #117

    Computers can Play Chess very well. But are not really intelligent beings.Intelligence as we understand it now is much more complex. There is multiple intelligence like, Musical Intelligence, Language Intelligence, Interpersonal Intelligence, Logical and Analytical Intelligence, Arithmatic intelligence. Have you seen the movie Rainman?

     Some Austic Children are quite good in chess, but may score low in an I.Q Test.

  • #118

    Yes, yes, yes...there are exceptions to any rule. We are not discussing computers, we are supposed to be discussing the relationship between high level human chess players and intelligence. Not interpersonal intelligence or kinesthetic or musical intelligence...let's concentrate on real, problem solving type intelligence!


  • #119
    ...umh I'm skeptic about it
  • #120

    IQ describes how well one performs on an IQ test.  A chess rating describes how well one performs at chess.  Is there a correlation?  Perhaps.  The reason IQ tests are useful is because there are several positive correlations between IQ and performance level in various tasks.  It would take a statistical study to show such a correlation.  If the idea is to predict ones "chess potential", using an IQ test (I don't know what else such a correlation would be useful for), I think it would be better to devise some test specific to the task.  Such a test would most obviously be comprised of tasks similar to tasks one faces in chess.  However, as we all know, or at least would like to believe, it is possible to improve one's skill with study and practice.  One could do poorly on the test, practice, then return and do better.  Actually the same is true of IQ tests, which is why they are given infrequently.  So such a test would, I think, fall short of the goal of measuring potential.

    When you really get down to it, IQ test are used to diagnose potential problems on the low end of the scale rather than potential greatness on the high end of the scale.   It’s much less meaningful to have an IQ of 130 than 70, even though both of these score are three standard deviations from the mean.  And having an IQ of 140 certainly does not mean that one is twice as intelligent as someone with an IQ of 70.  The fact that IQ scores are rather static, you may only be tested once in your life, and the fact that chess ratings can change drastically from one period of time to the next suggest to me that any comparison is unsound, and I wonder what the point would be anyway...


Online Now