11 Best Online Chess Classes for Adults and Beginners

Last Updated on April, 2024

Do you want to master all the complexities of the strategic game of chess? What better way to learn than through online chess courses from the comfort of your home, at your own pace, and at little to no cost?

We have compiled a list of the best online chess programs tailored to your needs.

11 of the Best Online Chess Courses

Here are our top picks for the best chess courses available for different proficiency levels.

1. IChessU

a screenshot of the ichessU course by chesscoachonline

IChessU, or International Chess University, takes the top spot for online chess lessons.

It differs from other courses because it provides private and group lessons through a dedicated teaching experience, ensuring interaction between students and teachers through real games. 

Pros

Group or private lessons are available.
Free trial lesson.
Experienced coaches include accomplished Grandmasters, International Masters, and FIDE trainers.
Instructors teach in English, mostly.

Cons

You are required to download the IChessU program to your computer. 

Best for: Anyone seeking personalized chess instruction and feedback from top-quality coaches who is willing to invest in a structural learning experience.

Pricing:

Group lessons: Starting at four hours a month for $180

Private lessons: Starting at roughly $180 a month for 4 hours, up to $600 a month for 20 hours. 

Instructors and Instructor Quality:

The coaching team at IChessU consists of accomplished chess players from various countries who are world-renowned grandmasters, international masters, and International Grandmasters, including Boris Avrukg, H. James Plaskett, and I.M. Tibor Karolyi.

Therefore, the quality of teaching is excellent.


2. Chess.com

a screenshot of the chess.com online course

Chess.com, a leading online chess platform, offers comprehensive lessons for players of all levels. 

Pros

Variety of lessons for beginner to advanced level players.
Free access to a wide range of chess resources and chess training.
Millions of global users ensure a tried and tested learning environment.
Animated video lessons for better visualization.

Cons

Basic and poor-quality visuals.

Best for: All chess players, from starters to advanced, who seek free online chess classes and popular resources with a wide range of lessons and challenges.

Pricing: This course is completely free.

Instructors and Instructor Quality

Beyond lessons, it provides a vibrant community, daily puzzles, tournaments, and the opportunity to play chess confidently and learn from world-renowned chess masters like Magnus Carlsen and Vishwanathan Anand.


3. Lichess.org: Interactive Lessons

a screenshot of the lichess online chess platform

Lichess.org is a free and open-source online chess platform with a user-friendly interface and engaging resources. It offers interactive lessons covering chess basics, fundamentals, board setup, and chess skills, making it an attractive choice for players of all levels. 

Pros

Short, engaging, and interactive lessons to learn chess. 
Free and open-source platform.
No downloads or installations are required.
Welcoming and supportive community to enhance your chess training. 

Cons

No certificate is offered.

Best for: Players seeking an attractive and accessible learning experience with a focus on tactics, checkmates, and endgames across all skill levels. 

Pricing: Completely free.

Instructors and Instructor Quality

Lichess.org doesn’t follow the format of other courses with video content featuring instructors. Rather, you learn through interactive online chess boards.


4. Best Chess Course for Complete Beginners (Udemy)

a screenshot of the Chess University's Intro To Chess Crash Course by udemy

Udemy’s chess course, curated by Chess University, caters to complete novices, offering a comprehensive journey from basics to advanced tactics.

With over 18,000 students enrolled, this course is a popular choice for those aiming to participate in chess tournaments. 

Pros

Covers all chess rules, basics, and advanced topics.
On-demand videos by 4 instructors.

Cons

No certificate is provided.
Some reviewers cite occasional vagueness in explanations.

Best for: Suitable for players of all ages whose chess strength is below 900 Elo.

Pricing: Completely free.

Instructor and Instructor Quality

The instructors are a panel of accredited and experienced chess players, ensuring that the quality of the course is exceptional.

Kairav Joshi: Top-selling online chess coach, Founder and CEO of the Prodigy program.

Dalton Perrine: FIDE Chess master.

Arne Jochens: FIDE Chess master.

Kostya Kavutskiy: International master.

This Udemy course is a go-to resource for individuals with a chess strength below 900 Elo. The involvement of experienced instructors and a high enrollment rate attest to its effectiveness in providing a solid foundation for aspiring chess players.


5. Chess University’s Intro to Chess Crash Course

a screenshot of the Chess University's Intro To Chess Crash Course of classcentral online learning platform

Chess University’s Intro To Chess Crash course is a priceless resource tailored for beginners. Specifically designed for those with chess strength below 900 Elo, this course welcomes participants of all ages and is entirely free.

Pros

Comprehensive learning for novices, covering basic rules to advanced strategy.
Completely free, making it accessible to a broad audience.
Well-structured course with on-demand videos by four skilled instructors.

Cons

No certificate is provided.
Some reviewers mention occasional vagueness in explanations. 

Best for: Beginners and first time players.

Pricing: Completely free.

Instructor and Instructor Quality

This course, backed by renowned instructors, including World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand, is an exceptional starting point for novices. Its free accessibility and strong curriculum ensure participants gain a solid understanding of chess fundamentals. 


6. LearningChess

a screenshot of the learningchess online platform

LearningChess is the best choice for novices with its user-friendly approach, self-paced learning, and affordability. This online chess course provides a solid foundation for new students, offering practice opportunities and accessibility across devices.

Pros

You can preview the course.
You can access lessons from a computer, tablet, or smartphone.
Money-back guarantee for added assurance.

Cons

No instructor feedback.
Course content is available for 2 years.

Best for: Complete beginners.

Pricing: Individual courses are priced at approximately $14.99 each. Or you can opt for a bundle package, granting access to all four online classes for $39.99. This package allows a two-year access period to all 144 available courses.

Instructor and Instructor Quality

The courses are curated by Grandmaster Jozsef Pinter and International Master Gabor Pirisi, which ensures quality and maintains high teaching standards.

LearningChess stands out for its quick and easy entry into the world of chess, making it an ideal starting point for beginners. This course’s emphasis on the engagement of students, practical applications, and flexibility ensures a well-rounded learning experience. 


7. Chessable: For Intermediate Online Learners

a screenshot of the chessable online platform

Chessable is an easy choice for intermediate chess players seeking to elevate their game. Offering a diverse array of online chess classes, both free and paid courses, Chessable caters to individuals with a foundational understanding of chess, providing opportunities for skill refinement and strategy exploration.

Pros

They have an app that allows students to learn chess anywhere, anytime.
Chessable provides an engaging and interactive learning experience. 

Cons

Specific available courses are more expensive.
Direct feedback from instructors is not available.

Best for: Intermediate learners.

Pricing: There are multiple courses for endgames, tactics, openings, and every other aspect. Depending on each individual course, they may be free or paid. For paid courses, there is a price filter you can use. Courses are categorized into three price ranges: Below $5, between $5-$15, and above $15.

Instructors and Instructor Quality

The instructors differ from course to course, but as you browse through each course, you can see that they are all instructed by either International Masters or Grand Masters. 

Chessable has a unique MoveTrainer system that combines video, board practice, and systemic review to reinforce chess principles. Courses are categorized into openings, endgames, strategies, and tactics to tailor the experience of learning the chess game.


8. Chess MasterClass

a screenshot of the Garry Kasparov Teaches Chess masterclass course available in classcentral platform

“Unleash Your Inner Grandmaster” is an online chess course offered by MasterClass, featuring the legendary Garry Kasparov as the instructor.

This course aims to elevate players of all levels by covering chess fundamentals, strategies, tactics, openings, middle games, endgames, and mental toughness. 

Pros

Garry Kasparov, a six-time world champion, is conducting the course.
The course offers comprehensive content and dives into various aspects of Kasparov’s personal journey.
The lessons have anecdotes that provide a unique learning experience.

Cons

Individuals have varying preferences, and the anecdotal teaching style might put some off.

Best for: Beginner to intermediate chess players.

Pricing: $10 a month for a subscription to MasterClass.

Instructor and Instructor Quality

Garry Kasparov is a chess grandmaster, former World Chess Champion, writer, political activist, and commentator. His peak rating of 2851 in 19991 was the highest recorded until surpassed in 2013.

He also holds the record for the most ranked No.1 player for 255 months overall in his career.

This course combines video content with a handbook, plays, tactics, strategies, and advanced skills, which is suited for beginner to intermediate players interested in chess insights and Kasparov’s life and ideas. 


9. Understanding Chess Openings I How to Play ANY Opening well (Udemy)

a screenshot of the Understanding chess openings | How to play ANY opening well udemy course available in classcentral platform

The Udemy course “Understanding Chess Openings” provides a concise and detailed guide for novices struggling with chess openings. With a focus on the crucial first ten moves, this course is led by accomplished instructor Mykhaylo Oleksiyenko.

Pros

The course is short and efficiently addresses the essentials without unnecessary complexity. 
An accomplished instructor leads it. 
It includes a range of downloadable resources for additional practice and reference. 

Cons

The course might be considered a little specific, targeting beginners struggling with opening moves.

Best for: Both novices and advanced players.

Pricing: $54.99 with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Instructor and Instructor Quality

Mykhaylo Oleksiyenko started playing chess at the age of four, possesses a Ph.D. in mathematics, and aims to integrate scientific principles into chess. He is also an international grandmaster and chess champion of Ukraine. 


10. Kids Learn Chess the Fun & Easy Way By Udemy

a screenshot of the Kids Learn Chess the Fun and Easy Way udemy course

Kids Learn Chess the Fun & Easy Way, instructed by Mike Klein, provides an animated chess lesson for children aged 5-13. The course combines fun and interactive elements to teach the fundamentals, chess tactics, and more advanced chess strategies. 

With 27 lectures and a duration of 2.4 hours, it is a highly rated option for parents seeking to introduce their children to the world of chess.

Pros

It utilizes animated videos to make learning engaging and enjoyable for kids.
Tailored specifically for children, ensuring a user-friendly and accessible learning experience.
It has a rating of 4.7/5.0.
It includes interactive games and puzzles you can play online. 

Cons

Some reviewers mention that the course may progress too quickly for certain online students.

Best for: Children who are completely new to chess.

Pricing: Free.

Instructors and Instructor Quality: Taught by Mike Klein, an American FIDE master and an award-winning coach. 


11. Beginner to Chess Master (ChessNetwork)

a screenshot of the Beginner to Chess Master youtube course available in classcentral platform

“Beginner to Chess Master” on ChessNetwork’s YouTube channel offers a comprehensive learning path for individuals transitioning from beginner to chess master. 

Pros

Offers comprehensive content that covers checkmate patterns, opening strategies, endgame scenarios, interactive games, and critical key concepts.
Provides clear and insightful instructions for better understanding.
Accessible to beginners. 
Interactive learning style that engages students effectively.

Cons

This course doesn’t provide formal certification upon completion.

Best for: Beginners.

Pricing: Free course.

Instructor and Instructor Quality: The instructor is a self-taught chess prodigy who earned the title of National Master.


Advantages of Taking Online Chess Courses

Enrolling in a chess program offers numerous advantages, with the game being a symbol of skill and intelligence for thousands of years.

The introduction of online courses has made it more accessible than ever to develop these chess skills.

  • Mental engagement: Chess is mentally stimulating due to its complexity.
  • Global connections: Online chess lessons let you connect with individuals globally, given chess’s international appeal.
  • Skill development: Chess enhances strategic thinking, patience, problem-solving, and various other skills.
  • Flexibility and convenience: You can take classes at your convenience and at a location of your choice. 

How to Choose the Best Chess Program?

Before choosing the best online chess class, the following factors must be considered.

Here are a few points to consider:

  • Determine your current skill level.
  • Review course content and curriculum to see if it includes what you want to learn in a logical order.
  • Find a course with a teaching style that suits your learning preference. Some techniques may use video courses, while others might use written form.
  • Check for interactive features within the course, like quizzes, puzzles, or practice chess games.
  • Read reviews and ratings from other students.
  • Look into the credentials of the instructor and instructor experience.
  • Evaluate the cost of the course. Some platforms offer free classes, while others don’t.
  • Ensure that the estimated duration of the course aligns with your schedule.
  • Look for any available trials or samples before committing to one single course.

What Are the Best Online Chess Classes?

Renowned platforms like Udemy, Chess.com, MasterClass, and Lichess.org offer the programs on this list. They are taught by instructors with extensive experience and cover a broad base of topics, from basics to advanced tactics. 

So far, we have presented all the best available options. Your choice from this list should depend on your skill level, time constraints, what you wish to learn, learning preference, and other specific needs.

a person playing chess

How Much Does an Online Chess Course Cost?

The pricing of chess tutorials varies, depending on multiple factors. Platforms like Chess.com and LearingChess provide free chess classes as integral parts of their websites. Some courses on platforms like Udemy have free trials.

If courses are standalone courses and not part of a broader subscription service, they can span from being free to $94.99. Individual courses, especially on Udemy, frequently undergo sales. Subscription-based courses range from $15-$600 per month. 

How Long Does it Take to Learn How to Play Chess Online?

The duration of chess programs varies greatly depending on the content offered. Courses targeting a beginner are shorter because they only focus on core concepts. The format of lessons affects the duration.

Content on video courses available on platforms like MasterClass requires time equal to the video duration, while text-based content, such as in learning chess, depends on reading speed. 

Furthermore, individual time investment also plays a significant role in how fast a course can be completed. Learning any new skill, including chess, requires dedication, practice, and reinforcement of the learned knowledge.

Other course categories you might like:

FAQs

Yes, online chess classes are worth paying for because they offer self-paced learning and are accessible from anywhere with Internet access. This allows individuals to easily learn and improve their chess skills without the need for in-person lessons.

The best online chess class is dependent on your knowledge, learning style, and specific preferences. Some popular options are Chess.com, Udemy, MasterClass, and Lichess.org, which cater to different experience levels and needs. Which one will suit you best?

Some potential topics covered in online chess courses include fundamental chess principles, various chess tactics, different chess openings, endgame strategies, and overall chess strategy. Course content may vary and may depend on the specific focus and structure of the course.

Yes, both group and private lessons offer active instruction, allowing beginners to receive guidance, ask questions, and seek feedback. Additionally, many online courses are free or budget-friendly.

Conclusion

Many diverse options are available on famous education platforms like Udemy and Chess.com, which offer various online courses tailored to different skill levels, learning styles, and preferences. 

Whether you are a complete beginner or an experienced player, many free and reasonably priced options are available to enhance your chess skills and join the community of chess enthusiasts. 

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Carlos Eduardo
Author
Carlos Eduardo
Hey there, I’m Carlos Eduardo, the Founder and Author of Scorebeyond. Delving deep into 20+ years of education transformation through innovative e-learning, I’ve poured my expertise into this platform. My enduring legacy continues to drive the path towards a future empowered by knowledge!

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