The release and quick withdrawal of some NCEA results early this morning has upset students and been described by one as "highly unethical".
NZQA has said that results would be released sometime this week yet some students say they were able to log in and see them this morning.
Only some students had access to their results, which was later revoked.
In a statement issued this morning, NZQA explained that the mix-up was because of a "normal process" where NCEA results are run early morning as a "final check" before the formal announcement that results are available.
And some students happened to be online between 6.25am and 6.30am when the "test" results went up, the statement said.
"Any results that were visible this morning were a part of testing only. Results are not official until they are released," NZQA said on its Twitter account.
Yet this testing was met with confusion by students waiting anxiously for their results.
Fred Saty asked: "Why did you even put "prelim" results up? How stupid, pretty sure you have successfully confused and frustrated every student."
Christopher Nairn wrote that some results were out today, but NZQA then took them down again and delayed the process 24 hours.
"Explain why suddenly, when results are done, we're denied them an extra 24 hours," he asked.
NZQA maintained that results would not be out today, stating there was no exact date for their release.
"It is a long process to ensure all data is correct [and] ready to be released so that all students get the [qualifications] they have earned."
One Herald online reader, who did not want to be named, wrote: "The fact that some students could login and see preliminary results, which I believe will be identical to the final results ... is highly unethical." (sic)
NZQA is asking all students to wait until the announcement that final results have been released and are available on their website.
"To avoid uncertainty learners will not be able to log in until results are released."
Results will be released this week, the statement said.
One secondary school teacher said he was online compiling a spread sheet of his students' results when NZQA pulled them.
"They were still up and accessible at 9.40am when I accessed them and created my spread sheet.
"I was able to put all my school's level 3 English results in and some of the level 2s. Then the search engine suddenly stopped showing any results."
He said it wasn't true that the results were only up until 6.30am.