How often do you bingo in Scrabble®?
February 15, 2008 11 Comments
How often do you bingo during a typical game of Scrabble®? Lately, I’ve been thinking about this question. Maybe it’s because I’ve started studying words and am trying to a) justify the time spent studying and b) find a more efficient and effective way of studying. As I previously wrote, we know that dedicated, systematic, and structured preparation (i.e., study) can lead to what we call "expertise". But what and how should one study?
A few years back, Craig Rowland (director of the Mississauga Scrabble Club) held an afternoon of "Scrabble School" during which he shared a recommended study strategy. I’ve been studying so that I can try to bingo more frequently because it’s the fastest way to score points – if you can get lucky, you can score huge points.
Anyway, I asked Craig how often he, and other experts, bingo in a typical game. I expected him to say two or more, but he surprised me. He said that on average, he bingos less than two times a game (something like 5 bingos in 3 games or 12 in 7 games), and would expect the same for other experts. Maybe I only recall the anomalous games when a player has 4 or 5 bingos, but I honestly expected experts to bingo more than twice a game. Granted, the examples he gave suggest something very close to 2 bingos a game, but not exactly. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any data to back-up my assumptions.
I did a bit of digging and have compiled some statistics for the 32 games I’ve played in 2008. Here is the data:
- My average bingos per game: 1.59
- My opponents bingos per game: 1.22
- Combined bingos per game: 2.81
That’s a bit less than even I expected. I plan on collecting this data for all of my games played and will see what happens. I’ve been asking around at the club, and a few experts said they expected two per game, but then changed that to "under two" being a more realistic value after thinking about it. I’d love to learn how others do – feel free to share your statistics/numbers below. I’ll post updates on my figures later in the year to see if my studying increases the number of bingos I play.
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