Cox, Pawar and Picton (1997) have developed a social development curriculum (SDC) for social work, which embraces planned social change to promote the wellbeing of all people. This paper asserts that a social development curriculum attempts to promote moral development of students with respect to its goals, values, and orientation to social problems. A review of this SDC however, presents educators with a number of difficulties, which include how students should acquire a value perspective in their social work education. There are particular dilemmas associated with these curricula including the importance of student autonomy, their moral development and the meaning of social and cultural pluralism and equal opportunity. © 2002 Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.