What happens when you combine WE’s year-round service learning program with the College Board’s Advanced Placement program? The chance for students to apply classroom learning to real-world situations and discover their power to change the world.

Changing the World Starts in the Classroom

Introducing AP® with WE Service


A Pilot Program to Incorporate Service Learning into AP® Courses

AP® with WE Service is a new pilot program designed in exclusive partnership between the College Board and WE, through our WE family of organizations. Launching in September 2016, the pilot will integrate WE’s internationally-recognized service-based Learning Framework and resources into six AP® courses—Computer Science A, Environmental Science, European History, Human Geography, Spanish Language and Culture and Studio Art: 2-D Design—enabling students to apply content and skills to real-life social issues and challenges through innovation, creativity and hard work. Students who complete the program will earn a service recognition on their transcripts.

Through the foundation and outcomes of the WE Learning Framework, students explore the root causes of pressing issues like hunger, poverty and lack of education. They also plan at least one local and one global action to improve their community and the world

The WE Learning Framework is the foundation for all of WE’s educational programming. As students’ progress through service learning projects they develop core skill sets. The top skills that will be developed are identified at the top of each activity and throughout WE materials. Through a diverse selection of specially designed learning tools and resources students find increased academic engagement, active citizenship and university and workplace readiness.

Why We’re Partnering

The College Board and WE share a passion for enriching students’ learning experiences and developing well-rounded citizens. By combining the academic challenge and AP® with the WE education and citizenship model, AP® with WE Service creates an opportunity for students to consider their classroom work and how it applies to real-world topics, while working closely with their peers to address relevant needs in the local, national, and global community.


The Program

Service learning is based on a structured academic foundation that goes beyond volunteering or doing community service.

Through AP® with WE Service educators will:
  • Connect the AP® experience with service learning opportunities
  • Foster broader academic discussions via the interactive and problem-based nature of service learning
  • Access relevant tools and resources to help them make the most of their service learning experience
  • Enable students to learn about local, national and global issues, engage with communities and become agents of change
Students who successfully complete the program will be empowered to:
  • Apply academic learning to real-life settings and situations
  • Enhance their leadership and social skills, critical thinking abilities and civic engagement and responsibility
  • Earn a service learning recognition from the AP® program
  • Understand the role they can play in making a positive impact on local, national and global issues

While service learning does involve performing service, it is based on a structured academic foundation. To learn more about the impacts of service learning, see Best Practices and Effectiveness of Service Learning, a compilation of research by Shelley K. White, PhD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Director, Master of Public Health Program, Simmons College (formerly Worcester State University) and Jonathan M. White, PhD, Associate Professor of Sociology, Director, Service Learning Center, Bentley University.

Service learning engages educators and students with their community in a structured way that allows for students to meet their learning objectives, while community needs are addressed through the service work that students carry out. The Best Practices and Effectiveness of Service Learning research shares the long-term benefits and outcomes for students that service learning offers as a pedagogy.

Best Practices and Effectiveness of Service Learning

The Promise of WE

The AP® with WE partnership provides an opportunity for students to realize their classroom work as it applies to the real world, while working closely with their peers to address actionable topics and issues in their community—locally, nationally and internationally.

WE’s service-based leaning approach allows students to apply knowledge and skills they are developing in their AP® courses to local and global contexts through innovation, creativity and critical thinking. WE’s programs encourage skills development for students to:

  • Increase academic engagement
  • Improve workplace and college readiness and completion
  • Instill lifelong citizenship

WE’s service-based learning program, called WE Schools, was designed to deepen students’ engagement with social issues while creating positive outcomes for society. More than curriculum, educational resources and action campaigns, the program is a movement of students and educators who believe that some of the most powerful learning experiences happen when you make a meaningful difference in your communities and for the world. By taking at least one local and one global action, the program helps students gain diverse skills and perspectives that challenge apathy and encourage active citizenship.

WE Schools Transforms Youth


81%81% of educators
say that WE Schools makes their students more likely to take action to improve the lives of others in their own community and abroad.
7 timesYouth in the WE Schools program are
7 times more likely
to see themselves as agents of change.
2 in 32 in 3 educators
say that WE Schools makes their students more likely to take action to improve the lives of others in their own community and abroad.
WE Schools Empowers Educators


78%78% of educators
feel more professionally fulfilled because of their involvement with WE Schools.
82%82% of educators
have identified leadership opportunities for their students because of WE Schools.
76%76% of educators
say they fostered a safe and inclusive environment because of WE Schools.
WE Schools Prepares Young Leaders


73%73% of youth
are motivated to go to college because of involvement with WE Schools.
92%92% of young adult participants
mentioned WE Schools achievements on
their resume.
94%94% of students
said employers reacted positively to seeing WE Schools involvement on their resume.

Service Learning Recognition Requirements

Working with the WE Service Framework, each AP® with WE Service module will require a minimum of 10 hours of in-class instruction and 20 hours of student work outside of the classroom.

To be eligible for recognition for transcripts students must complete the following criteria:

  • Investigate and Learn: Undertakes a student-led investigation of a topic at local and global levels and evaluates existing programs that take action on the topic making clear connections to the AP® course topic.
  • Action Plan: Develops an achievable plan to carry out one global and one local action in the form of direct service, indirect service, or advocacy, which includes clear tasks, responsibilities, resources needed and timeline.
  • Take Action: Participates in a project that has local and global significance, involving direct service, indirect service and/or advocacy.
  • Report and Celebrate: Creates a portfolio that showcases the service learning project and participation in a commemorative activity by explaining, either in writing or in an oral presentation, the impact of the project and its significance.
  • Record: Maintains a log of activities related to the project that includes at least 20 outside of class hours

Reflect: Completes written reflections that make connections between the local and global topic(s) and learning about one’s self, one’s team, community and the larger environment.


WE Resources Enrich AP® with WE Service Modules

For each of the six AP® courses offered through the AP® with WE Service pilot year, educators can select one of two issue-focused accessible at collegeboard.org/APWE tied to that subject. Each module integrates the WE Learning Framework, as well as educational tools and resources to enable students to apply their AP® course learning to service initiatives. Explore more WE resources, including a library of service learning activities, action campaigns and more to integrate in each module. These resources will enrich the instruction for educators and students.

Supplemental WE Resources for AP® Computer Science A

Explore WE resources to support modules on access to education and access to health care.

Supplemental WE Resources for AP® Environmental Science

Explore WE resources to support modules on access to clean water and human impact on loss of biodiversity.

Supplemental WE Resources for AP® European History

Explore WE resources to support modules on access to education and poverty.

Supplemental WE Resources for AP® Human Geography

Explore WE resources to support modules on food insecurity and hunger, and access to health care.

Supplemental WE Resources for AP® Spanish Language and Culture

Explore WE resources to support modules on the effect of poverty on access to education and the environment.

Supplemental WE Resources for AP® Studio Art: 2-D Design

Explore WE resources to support modules on home and displacement, and natural environments.

Interested in participating for the 2017/2018 school year?