Basic steps for predicting molecular geometries:

1) Add up the total number of valence electrons.

2) Write down the central atom, and connect all peripheral atoms to it with a pair of electrons.

3) Distribute enough electrons to all the peripheral atoms so that they all have a full octet.

4) Distribute the remaining electrons as pairs to the central atom.



Let’s use ICl3 as an example:

1) one I + three Cl = 7 + 21 valence e- = 28 valence e-



2)



3)



4)



Try a couple of molecules for practice:
1) SOCl2
2) PBr3
3) ClO2F
4) XeF4
5) BrF5
6) ClF3
7) SCl3F3
8) XeF2
9) SF4
10) ICl5
11) ICl4-
12) SCl2
13) ICl2-
14) I3-

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