Lexical bundles, as building blocks of coherent discourse, have been the subject of much research in the last two decades. While many of such studies have been mainly concerned with exploring variations in the use of these word sequences across different registers and disciplines, very few have addressed the use of some particular groups of lexical bundles within some genres of academy. To address generic variations, this research focused on anticipatory it bundles as a particular structural group of bundles. More specifically, this study chose to investigate range, frequency, and function of these word clusters in applied linguistics research articles and postgraduate writing. Through the use of two big corpora of research articles and postgraduate theses, two text analysis programs, and a functional taxonomy of it bundles, this study found that it bundles were used relatively frequently in both published and postgraduate writing. Functional analysis showed that anticipatory it lexical bundles served a wide variety of functions in both genres investigated. This study also revealed that some anticipatory it lexical bundles commonly used by students in their postgraduate writing did not count as bundles in research articles, both in terms of variety and frequency. As for implications, the study calls for the incorporation of such clusters in L2 and/or EAP (English for Academic Purposes).