My Chess Education

Chess Improvement for Beginners

Time and cost can sometimes make it impossible for an enthusiastic student of chess to hire a chess coach. I have, through trial and error, began devising a training curriculum to be used by me and others. This plan is in no way meant to take the place of a competent chess coach, but hopefully it will aid those who are unable to hire one.

In the next series of posts I will describe how the curriculum has come to be as well as my experience in using the plan. In creating this chess improvement plan, I have researched book and online content focusing on chess improvement and education. I have also made it as generic as possible so that it may be used not just by me but by others including children. I have much to learn both about chess and learning about chess, but the exercise of writing about it will not only assist me in mastering both of these elements, but will allow me to share my experiences with others so that they might benefit as well.

My Goal

My personal goal is to reach the expert level within 5 years, specifically to go from an estimated 1400 ELO to UCF 2000 a 750 point increase. I believe that a 150 pt ELO increase per year is a realistic expectation.

Improvement Table

I have been playing ‘semi-seriously’ for approximately two years, and while I have not competed in any USCF tournaments, my aggregate online chess rating is approximately 1400. While I know this is not comparable to a true USCF ELO rating, it will have to serve as the benchmark during the initial stages.

I’m really looking forward to these posts, and I would love to here your feedback.

beginchess has written 144 articles

7 thoughts on “My Chess Education

  1. Hi

    Very true. You write really well. your site is really informative.

    Keep writing…..

    Waiting for other entry to come…

    one thing… my ELO starts from 1200+ 🙁 not 1400 ……..

    All the best!

  2. Ian says:

    Hey, I have been playing chess now for 12 days, my elo rating is about 1150. Is that good? I’m finding it really hard to increase it any further, quickly. Though that is probably normal.

    I agree with your 150 points per year expectation.

  3. beginchess says:

    Ian, an adult beginner can expect to start in the 900-1000 ELO range. Of course ELO ratings are relative depending on where you play chess so use it as a benchmark to track your improvement but unless it’s a FIDE or USCF rating it might not be very accurate. A good first start is to check out the post on the generic training schedule which can be found at .

    Good luck on your journey towards chess improvement.

  4. Ian says:

    Ah, thanks allot for your reply.

    I’m sorry, I should have mentioned my age. I am 16 years old.

    I will certainly check that out. Great website and I am positive that you will reach your goal you are extremely dedicated.

    The rating is what I recieved from playing online on various websites and from chessmaster 10th edition, I get about the same rating so I thought that it was accurate.

    (also really sorry for asking you questions)

  5. Ian says:

    Hey, how are you doing with increasing that rating of yours?

    I wanted to ask you, dont you think it will get harder to increase your rating at the later stages?

    Going from 1400 to 1550 should be easier than reaching 2000 from 1850 I think.

    I really don’t know.

  6. demon_szybkosci says:

    I wish you success. I think your goal is quite resonable. In my opinion realizing this goal mostly depends how you will be training. If you will work systematically and with proper study plan… you shoud succedd. But remember if you want to understand the royal game much more… you have to work efficient (effective). I am just an amateur (1801 ELO) and I know how hard is to reach 2000 ELO (!) and play so strong (not having this rating once or twice). But constant practice of theory and playing in strong tournaments will be guarantee you have to do it.

    Best regards – Tomasz

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