Dr. Kocabiyik completed her baccalaureate and master's degrees in mathematics at Middle East Technical University in 1979 and 1981 respectively. She obtained her doctorate in Applied Mathematics from the University of Western Ontario in 1987 where she stayed on for a few more years as a postdoctoral fellow before moving to Manitoba as an Assistant Professor of Applied Mathematics in 1995.
Dr. Kocabiyik joined the department as an Associate Professor in 1999 and became a full Professor in 2005. She teaches mainly in the areas of fluid mechanics, partial differential equations and numerical solution of differential equations. Her research is an interdisciplinary blend of classical applied mathematics, theoretical fluid mechanics and computational science. Her recent research focuses on several classes of unsteady separated flows caused by fluid, bluff body and free-surface interaction with application to vortex-induced vibrations. She is particularly interested in a good correspondence between computational, analytical and experimental studies. Consequently, she adopts a research methodology which is a strong mix of applied analysis, numerical simulation and comparison with experiment.
Dr. Kocabiyik has published about 80 refereed research papers and has given over 100 lectures in 15 different countries around the world. She is on the Editorial Board of the Canadian Journal of Physics. She has provided research training to more than 30 students, undergraduates, graduate students and post-doctoral fellows. She has played a key role in the explosive growth of the number of graduate students in the department, which has gone from 17 to 50 (1999-09). She has received over $2M in peer-reviewed individual and team research grants.
Dr. Kocabiyik's career in academia is marked by a number of 'firsts'. She was the first woman to receive a Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics at Western (1987). In 2000, she became the first woman in Canada to win the Petro-Canada Young Innovator Award. She is the first woman full professor of mathematics at Memorial (2005). She is a lifetime member of the Canadian Applied and Industrial Mathematics Society and was honored with their Arthur Beaumont Distinguished Service Award in 2006, and became the first recipient of this award outside the B.C.-Alberta-Ontario nexus. In 2010, as a co-chairwoman of the Society's annual meeting, her fund-raising activities resulted in the highest amount of funding ever recorded since the Society's inception in 1974.