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Thousands of school students across the country will sit their first NCEA exam this morning.
Just over 39,000 students will sit Level 1 science at 9.30am, while more students will sit Japanese, geography, chemistry and history exams throughout the day.
There were more than 143,000 students sitting NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams from today until December 2, NZQA deputy chief executive for assessment Richard Thornton said.
"The end of year NCEA exams are a very important part of gaining NCEA and NZQA.
"School staff, parents and whanau will continue to support students over the coming weeks as they sit their exams.''
Mr Thornton said there were more than one million entries into individual NCEA standards this year and 120 exam sessions.
He said Level 1 English was the year's largest exam, with 47,200 students sitting the exam this Wednesday morning.
The smallest was New Zealand Scholarship Latin, with 29 students sitting the exam on December 2.
A number of students were sitting exams at more than one level, he said.
A team of approximately 1,750 markers will mark all papers by Christmas, and NCEA results are expected to be released online from the middle of January, Mr Thornton said.
-- 62,101 students entered at Level 1
-- 56,190 students entered at Level 2
-- 39,843 students entered at Level 3
-- 10,448 students entered in 27 New Zealand Scholarship subjects.