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From my understanding, polarity occurs when the electrons of a molecule aren't distributed equally. An easy way to figure out whether a molecule is polar is to see if its shape is non-symmetric, so H20 would be polar since it is a bent molecule, while BeCl2 is nonpolar since it is a linear molecule.
A polar molecule must have polar bonds with dipoles that do not cancel each other out. So the electronegativity of atoms must be evident and typically on the same side of the central atom. Draw a lewis structure and then determine its molecular shape. It is determined the symmetry of the molecule (lone pairs).
A nonpolar molecule will only have Van Der Waals forces because they all have the same pull for electrons (electronegativity) while polar molecules have dipole forces because the two atoms have a difference in electronegativity that’s makes KWon atom pull them electron more than the other atom.
Another way to determine polarity that might be helpful would be to imagine strings on the ends of the atom. If you pull on the strings and there's a stronger pull on one end of the molecule compared to the other, then the molecule is polar. The same goes vice versa (equal pull all around = nonpolar molecule).
To determine polarity, measure the electronegativity of all the atoms in the molecule. If there is an uneven distribution of electronegativity (more electronegativity to one side of the atom), there will be a dipole moment, causing the molecule to be polar.
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