Changes in beginning medical students' preferred interview responses appear attributable to a course that emphasizes communication techniques for developing patient rapport. For each offive successive classes, pre /postcourse preferences were obtained for alternative response modes (categorized as understanding, probing, interpretive, supportive, and evaluative. Analysis indicated significant increases in students' preferences for understanding responses and decreases in preferences for evaluative responses (p <.001). Changes are in the desired direction with respect to course goals, since rapport is generally enhanced by conveying understanding and refraining from premature evaluation. Effects on response preferences of some instructor characteristics are analyzed. Implications for health professions education and research are discussed.