Behavior characterization is increasingly used and studied in the pathogenesis and management of coronary disease. A specific behavior pattern called Type A has been found to be independently associated with fatal and nonfatal coronary disease. The assessment of Type A is made without quantitative guidelines based on verbal and nonverbal behaviors in a standardized interview. This study has attempted to make this classification solely on the basis of quantifiable verbal behaviors. Two naive persons were trained to code speech behaviors from tape recorded behavior pattern interviews on which Type A had previously been assessed. Intercoder and intracoder reliability was acceptable. Using regression analysis 87% of the interviews were classified in agreement with the previous, standard assessment. Volume of voice and speed of speech were found to make the greatest predictive contribution. Other verbal characteristics including plosiveness were also important. It is concluded that Type A can be validly and repeatedly measured by verbal behaviors in the standardized interview.