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I'll leave it to students to comment on what I discussed in detail in Monday's class as to why hybridization as a bonding model is needed. The example I covered in detail was methane.
The purpose of hybridization is to see the types of bonds that the atoms share with each other, whether it be sigma or pi bonds. The different types of bonds allow different properties, like how pi bonds do not allow rotation whereas sigma bonds are rotational.
The reason we use hybridization is in part to find the lowest energy (and thereby more stable) form of a molecule. Hybridization differs from VSEPR model because the latter can only help find geometric shapes of molecules while the former can build on VSEPR models to figure how many sigma- and pi- bonds a molecule has, which enable fusion of the orbitals to create more stable molecules.
Hybridization is actually the way we explain the VSEPR model. We first discover some molecular geometry. For example, the C-H bond in CH4 has equal length, but the valence electrons are not in the same energy level; and later we use hybridization as an explanation that hybrid orbitals are assumed to be mixtures of atomic orbitals, superimposed on each other in various proportions.
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