Brad Ost is the Head of the Reference Services Department and also subject liaison in the areas of Theology and Philosophy at the Atlanta University Center Robert W. Woodruff library in Atlanta, GA. Brad earned his MLIS at IUPUI and soon after graduating started working at the Woodruff library in 2008. Brad is the Chair of the Scholarly Communications and Open Access Working Group and works with this group to advance Open Access, Data Management and OER awareness across the AUC campuses.
His capstone project was the production, in collaboration with a faculty member, of an online textbook titled African Traditional Religions: Ifa. The goal was to provide students with an OA textbook, which would serve as a comprehensive text for a substantially lower cost. This textbook on the traditional African religion, Ifa, has replaced several texts previously used to teach the African Traditional Religions class. Previously, the students generally purchased 9 texts for the course; now the OA textbook includes content covered across 7 of those texts.
The project has been successfully developed and the goals met. A text comprised of scholarly content and images – under a Creative Commons Open Access license – has been created, and resides in an easily accessible libguide. The text is academic yet accessible and the images are professionally rendered. Every member of the creation team were enthusiastic and determined throughout. The project was interesting and satisfying, as the team was able to develop something that would benefit not only the local AUC class, but possibly many others globally.