According to Spiegel, Germany's distribution of resources remains a problem. In Cologne, a spokesperson said that they accept more students than they have space for with hopes that some change their minds, leaving the university is at capacity.
"All of our faculties this winter semester are full to capacity. The demand is so strong that we generally accept more students than we have room for," Patrick Honecker told the magazine.
Despite the University of Cologne's problems, Spiegel found that nearly 15,000 available places even in subjects that have restricted admission guidelines in place, and says that the number is probably higher due to some states not keep record of unoccupied seats.
North Rhine-Westphalia reported the largest number of available university spots, counting 8,398 free places in the restricted admission fields for a bachelor's degree.
University programmes in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania saw the lowest demand, as Spiegel found that 16.1 percent of all undergraduate places were available there, while more than a quarter (26.1 percent) of Masters places were unoccupied.
Berlin, Brandenburg, Hesse, Schleswig-Holstein and Saarland are among the states that do not keep centralised records of available university spaces.
The Federal Ministry of Education told Spiegel it was up to individual states to make sure that all students looking for a university degree got a spot, no matter where they wished to study.
Meanwhile, state respresentatives say that their federal counterparts should create a centralised allocation method that would fairly serve both states and students. This has already been announced, but has yet to materialise.
Until 2008, there was a "Central Office for the Allocation of Places" (ZVS), but was shut down due to states and educational institutes demanding that students should be able to choose for themselves where they wanted to study.