Testing chess ability


This study introduces the Amsterdam Chess Test (ACT). The ACT measures chess playing proficiency through five tasks: a Choose-a-Move task (comprised of two parallel tests), a Motivation Questionnaire, a Predict-a-Move task, a Verbal Knowledge Questionnaire, and a Recall task. The validity of these tasks was established using external criteria based on the Elo chess rating system. Results from a representative sample of active chess players (N = 234) showed that the ACT is a very reliable test for chess expertise, and that ACT has high predictive validity (r ≈ .8). Several hypotheses about the relations between chess expertise, chess knowledge, motivation, and memory were tested. Incorporating response latencies in test scores is shown to be useful as this leads to an increase in criterion validity, in particular for relatively easy items.


van der Maas, H. L. J. & Wagenmakers, E.J. (2005). The Amsterdam Chess Test: a psychometric analysis of chess expertise. American Journal of Psychology, 118, 29-60.

Spss file with data. Please refer to our paper when you use this data:



Choose a move A

Choose a move B

Mentality test

Predict a Move

Knowledge test

Memory test

For a good online chess test see:



"I don't believe in psychology, I believe in good moves." Bobby Fischer