The theoretical determination of singlet–triplet splittings of the excited states of closed‐shell molecules is discussed with emphasis on the use of the Xα–scattered wave method. With this method, splittings can be computed in two independent ways. Both will have corrections due to orbital relaxation effects. The singlet–triplet splittings obtained with the Xα–scattered wave method for several large organic molecules are reviewed. It is seen that the results using the two splitting formulas differ by a large amount; in fact, they differ by the magnitude of the computed splitting. We provide a criterion for choosing the results obtained with one method over the other by showing that they both give upper bounds to the best result obtainable within the framework of the model. However, because of the large differences between the two methods, the quantitative value of the splitting should be viewed with caution. Copyright © 1975 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.