I am good at standardized tests. I did well on the SAT in 7th and 8th grades, the PSAT in 10th, the SAT in 11th, and now the LSAT, all without much effort or taking any prep classes (I did study for the LSAT, but it was like, take MAYBE one PT/week, that's it).
I grew up in an upper middle class family that cared about education. I read a lot as a child. I started learning my third language before I was in kindergarten. I did logic games and puzzles of all sorts for fun as a kid. Some of my favorite classes in undergrad were logic classes. I worked in a library all through high school. I ate three healthy meals every day with my family, and they usually involved critical conversation about various topics. I watched School House Rock. I was in a gifted students pull-out program in middle school that allowed me to study in depth topics that interested me. Basically, I had pretty much every advantage growing up to prepare me for this sort of thing.
BUT. Plenty of people I went to high school with, or went to college with, whose family backgrounds were no more disadvantaged than mine, do not do as well on standardized exams, or need to put much more effort in.
Certainly those background factors contribute, but I really, really believe that even within that group preconditioned to do well, there is a lot of luck involved. The way standardized tests want you to think is just the way I naturally think. I am lucky that way. There are lots of people whom I consider to be as intelligent as me, or moreso, even, who do not have the same ease with standardized testing as me. I'm sure many of those people could write a MUCH better essay than me, I'm better at filling in bubbles. It's a talent just like any other, and there are lots of other things I am not at all talented at.
I hope this does not come off as obnoxious or like I'm a huge tool. I do not think that my skill at taking this sort of exam makes me any more or less intelligent than people whose skills lie elsewhere, it just makes me lucky that the thing I am good at happens to be the thing that carries so much weight with admissions.