Binghamton University Lifelong Enrichment and Advancement for Registered Nurses (BU-LEARN)

To provide continuing education for registered nurses and other health care professionals, Binghamton University's Decker School of Nursing and the Center for Innovative and Continuing Education formed the Binghamton University Lifelong Enrichment and Advancement for Registered Nurses program, or BU LEARN. The Decker School and the CICE are approved providers of continuing nursing education by the New York State Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.


Lifelong learning is essential to maintain and increase competence in nursing practice, and is essential to the provision of safe, high-quality health care. BU-LEARN sees as its mission the utilization and expansion of the University’s intellectual and physical resources through continuing nursing education programs. BU-LEARN seeks to enrich the lives of registered nurses in our region and registered nurses throughout rural New York state through the dissemination of knowledge about human health care; health promotion; and the treatment of illness in individuals, families and communities, with an emphasis on underserved and rural populations.


BU-LEARN will develop into a key provider of quality continuing education programs – both traditional classroom instruction and online programs – for registered nurses in New York state within the next three years. The program will provide lifelong learning opportunities targeting underserved populations.

BU-LEARN will offer online, as well as traditional ‘live’ programs in topics and timeframes that meet the needs of today’s busy professionals, especially those in rural and other areas where continuing education opportunities are limited.

Forensic Health Certificate Program

Now more than ever, the health care system frequently becomes enmeshed with the legal system, creating numerous opportunities for health care providers in the field of forensic health. The term forensic comes from the Latin forensis (forum) and means “pertaining to the law” – that which is legal. The use of the term forensic health applies to those instances where health care professionals interact with the law or legal issues. Forensic health is the application of the health-related sciences to public or legal proceedings, the application of the forensic aspects of health care in the scientific investigation and treatment of trauma and/or death of victims and perpetrators of abuse, violence, criminal activity, traumatic accidents, and environmental hazards. Forensic health professionals come from nursing, social work, psychology, occupational therapy and other disciplines. While this certificate will most likely attract primarily nurses, it can also be utilized by other disciplines, including social work, psychology, sociology and anthropology. Students in these disciplines, and others, may also elect to take individual courses as electives and not pursue the entire certificate.

The Forensic Health Certificate Program is composed of 3 modules:

There are 45 contact hours for each module, for a total of 135 hours. All three are needed to earn the certificate, however, they can be taken in any sequence. All three are fully online and asynchronous, meaning you can do the work at your own pace, as long as the assignments are posted by their due time. The assignments are content-related quizzes at the end of each section, 15 three-hour sections per module.

Forensic Pediatrics

Violence touches the lives of children with alarming frequency. According to the 2006 Report on Juvenile Offenders and Victims by the US Department of Justice Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, juveniles of all ages are the victims of violent crime. Some of their offenders are family members, as is often the case for very young victims. Research has shown that child victimization and abuse are linked to problem behaviors that become evident later in life. So an understanding of childhood victimization and its trends may lead to a better understanding of juvenile offending. Health care professionals work with both victims and perpetrators, yet they have little education and resources for dealing with the everyday forensic issues of pediatric practice. This module helps fill the forensic void by providing current, concise and practical information that assists pediatric professionals with the prevention, identification and management of pediatric victimization and offending. Topics include: the effects of violence on youth, interviewing and assessing children/adolescents, evidence, expert witness testimony, compassion fatigue and vicarious victimization, children of incarcerated parents, child abuse, shaken baby syndrome, Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy, sexual assault and exploitation, the juvenile justice system, delinquency, child delinquents, female delinquents, animal cruelty, arson, gangs, bullying and child death investigation.

This module provides 30 hours of instruction.

More Information | Register for this Module

Medicolegal Death Investigation

This module provides an overview of forensic and medicolegal issues as they relate to the investigation of an individual’s death. Content includes how deaths are investigated in the United States, postmortem changes, common injury patterns and findings, cause and manner of death, special types of death investigations, and working with families.

This module provides 45 contact hours of instruction.

More Information | Register for this Module

Forensic Faculty

Mary Muscari, PhD, MSCr, CPNP, PMHCNS-BC

Dr. Muscari is a forensic psychiatric nurse and criminologist with over 30 years of experience in the field, particularly in youth and sexual violence. She has numerous presentations and publications, including two forensic books (one of which won an AJN Book of the Year Award), her 2012 book on PTSD, and Not My Kid: 21 Steps to Raising a Nonviolent Child.

Matthew M. Lunn, MS, F-ABMDI

Mr. Lunn is a medical investigator and criminologist in the Denver metro area with extensive experience in the investigation of violent and high profile deaths having been an invited speaker at local, state and national trainings. In service to the profession, Mr. Lunn is a board member for the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators, a committee member for the National Association of Medical Examiners, and a committee member for a NIJ scientific working group.

Last Updated: 4/10/15