Using Session Attributes in an Alexa Skill

30 minutes
  • 5 Learning Objectives

About this Hands-on Lab

In this lab, you will store session attributes on the launch request to be used in the final response. Objectives for this lab include creating and setting session attributes, getting session attributes in a later intent, using the session attributes in the response, and deploying and testing the skill. **Note:** You must have your own Amazon Developer account, which you can [sign up]( for if you do not already have one.

Learning Objectives

Successfully complete this lab by achieving the following learning objectives:

Configure Amazon Skills Kit to Use Your AWS Developer Account
  1. Initialize the ASK CLI:

    ask init --no-browser
  2. Copy/paste the URL that appears from the terminal to a browser window.

  3. Log in to the developer console when prompted.

  4. Copy/paste the authorization code.

  5. Enter y for Yes to connect to the AWS account already set up on the VM.

  6. Choose the default AWS account.

Clone and Check Out Branch
  1. Clone the template skill:

    ask new --url
  2. Navigate into the directory:

    cd content-aws-skill-builder
  3. To start with a template and perform the tasks for this lab yourself:

    git checkout lab_attributes
  4. To start with the solution to the lab:

    git checkout lab_attributes_solution
Develop the Skill

In ../lambda/custom/index.js:

  1. Add session attributes to LaunchRequest:

      const LaunchRequestHandler = {
          canHandle(handlerInput) {
              return Alexa.getRequestType(handlerInput.requestEnvelope) === 'LaunchRequest';
          handle(handlerInput) {
              const vets = { "dog": "Dr. Kay Nine", "cat": "Dr. Fee Line" }
              const speakOutput = "Exclusive Veterinary Services welcomes you. You can say I want to register my pet.";
              return handlerInput.responseBuilder
                  .withSimpleCard('Exclusive Vet Services', 'We are here for your fur-baby.')
  2. Get session attributes and use in the response in CompletedRegisterPetIntentHandler:

      const CompletedRegisterPetIntentHandler = {
          canHandle(handlerInput) {
              const request = handlerInput.requestEnvelope.request;
            return request.type === 'IntentRequest'
              && === 'RegisterPetIntent'
              && request.dialogState === 'COMPLETED';
          handle(handlerInput) {
              // Session attributes
              const vets = handlerInput.attributesManager.getSessionAttributes();
              console.log('have vets')
              // Slot values
              pet_type = handlerInput.requestEnvelope.request.intent.slots.pet_type.resolutions.resolutionsPerAuthority[0].values[0]
              pet_name = handlerInput.requestEnvelope.request.intent.slots.pet_name.value
              pet_breed = handlerInput.requestEnvelope.request.intent.slots.pet_type.value
              console.log('ready for output')
              const speechOutput1 = "We are happy to welcome your " + pet_breed + ". Your " + pet_type + " named " + pet_name + " is registered! ";
              const speechOutput2 = pet_name + "'s veterinarian is " + (pet_type === "dog" ? : + ".";
              const speakOutput = speechOutput1 + speechOutput2
              return handlerInput.responseBuilder
                  //.reprompt('add a reprompt if you want to keep the session open for the user to respond')
Deploy and Test
  1. Deploy the skill:

    ask deploy
  2. Begin performing a test:

    ask dialog --locale en-US
  3. The prompt will change to User >.

  4. Enter open exclusive vet and follow the prompts.

Cleanup Amazon Developer Account Alexa Console

At this point the skill you just created should be deleted from your Alexa Console.

Please do so at this link Alexa Console.

Additional Resources

The Exclusive Veterinary Services staff is really excited about how Alexa can help register pets for their services.

They would like the final registration response to tell the pet owner who the veterinarian will be for their pet. Dr. Kay Nine works with dogs, and Dr. Fee Line works with cats.

You have decided to use session attributes in the LaunchRequest to store this information and then pull it out in the RegisterPetHandlerIntent to be used in the final registration response.

If you have not created an Amazon Developer account yet, please do so before proceeding: Amazon Developer account creation.

What are Hands-on Labs

Hands-on Labs are real environments created by industry experts to help you learn. These environments help you gain knowledge and experience, practice without compromising your system, test without risk, destroy without fear, and let you learn from your mistakes. Hands-on Labs: practice your skills before delivering in the real world.

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