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DistillerSR: Introduction

This pilot project will explore the efficiency of the document review process through the use of DistillerSR software. Use the instructions on this site to navigate the DistillerSR tool.

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Who can use DistillerSR

DistillerSR is web-based, systematic review software that manages, tracks, and streamlines the screening, data extraction, and reporting processes of your systematic reviews. It allows SR teams to upload search results, streamline the screening and data extraction process by allowing reviewers to build forms, monitor progress of the review, and export your results in multiple formats.

Who is eligible to access DistillerSR?

Distiller SR is available to faculty and research staff from the University of Pennsylvania, the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Presbyterian Hospital, and Pennsylvania Hospital who have a UPenn email address and meet the criteria listed below. For those working with collaborators outside of the university, the project lead must be from the University of Pennsylvania. 

What projects are eligible to use DistillerSR?

There are a limited number of seats in our current license to DistillerSR and priority will be given to faculty and researchers who have demonstrated advanced knowledge of the systematic review process. Advanced knowledge will be demonstrated by meeting the criteria below:

  • There is a written protocol plan. Protocol Template example
  • The team must consist of at least three members.
  • There is a firm timeline in place for the completion of the review.
  • Most importantly, the literature search has been completed in all relevant databases and is loaded in a citation manager. 

How do I access DistillerSR?

The Project Administrator should fill out the registration form for a DistillerSR account.  If you have successfully met the criteria, and there is a project seat available, you will then be contacted by a librarian from Penn Libraries.

Form link:

What are the responsibilities of the Project Administrator?

The Project Administrators should be the PI or senior member of the SR team. They will oversee all the work done in Distiller and have additional permissions and access abilities then other users. Their permissions include setting up the project workflow, insuring the project progresses in a timely manner, fielding questions from team members and downloading the data at the end of the project.  Therefore, they need to have a basic understanding of how DistillerSR works. We highly recommend viewing this introductory video first, Introduction to Configuration in DistillerSR (video, 26:26 minutes) and relying heavily on the User's Guide. 

How long do I have access to Distiller SR?

Once your account has been established you will have access for 9 months. Because we have a limited number of seats, and to be considerate of other researchers needs, your account activity will be reviewed after four months. If there has been little to no activity, you will be notified and your account will be turned off. All project work can be downloaded for archival purposes at any time.