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My name is Abby Stephan, and I earned my Ph.D. in Learning Sciences from the College of Education at Clemson University in South Carolina and became a Certified Family Life Educator (CFLE) through the National Council on Family Relations.

After spending many of my early formative years within a multigenerational household and remaining close with my grandparents throughout adolescence and early adulthood, I set out to understand what makes intergenerational bonds so powerful and how to bolster these unique relationships. I primarily focus on these relationships in informal learning environments, including family and community settings.

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I am also fascinated by human growth and development throughout the lifespan, with specific interest in learning processes, along with social and psychological well-being. I enjoy learning about these phenomena from and with collaborators, students, and research participants.

Outside of my professional research and teaching, you will most likely find me spending time with family and friends, taking my dog Kip for long walks, reading a good book, reorganizing (and color-coding!) my office, and/or listening to a podcast.



  • Human Development across the Lifespan

  • Intergenerational Relationships

  • Intergenerational Learning Experiences

  • Grandfamilies and Grandparent Caregivers

  • Healthy Aging

  • Informal Learning Environments

  • Self-Directed Learning

  • Lifelong Learning


Ph.D., Learning Sciences

Concentration: Human Development across the Lifespan

Dissertation: Examining Intergenerational Relationships in the Family

College of Education | Clemson University 


B.A., Language and International Trade (summa cum laude)

Minor: Cultural Anthropology

College of Architecture, Arts, & Humanities | Clemson University 

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